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Sylvester Gardenzio Stallone was born in New York City in the rough Hell’s Kitchen area. He earned a B.A. after attending American College of Switzerland and the University of Miami. He began his career in the entertainment industry taking on small roles such as in the 1971 thriller Klute and the 1971 comedy Bananas as well as an appearance in the 1970 soft-core porn flick The Party at Kitty and Stud’s. Stallone’s breakthrough role came alongside Henry Winkler in the 1974 teen gang film The Lords of Flatbush. Despite this, lackluster roles continued to come Stallone’s way.
Besides his acting career, Stallone also wanted to be recognized as a screenwriter and wrote a script inspired by the 1975 Muhammad Ali-Chuck Wepner fight in Cleveland. Rocky would become a classic in American cinema, garnering 10 Academy Award nominations and winning the 1976 Academy Award for Best Picture. The Rocky movie franchise would make Stallone a bonafide movie star and screenwriting legend.
Thanks to his ripping physique, his work in gritty action films such as 1982’s First Blood and its 1985 sequel Rambo: First Blood Part II brought Stallone even more attention. Through the years, Stallone has tried his hand at comedy and less violent action films with mixed results. In 2010, Stallone rounded up a slew of other muscular actors for the high octane action film The Expendables, even bringing along the man who played his nemesis in 1985’s Rocky IV, Dolph Lundgren, this time as a fellow mercenary/friend. It became a massive hit and has spawned two sequels, the latest of which will be released this August.
In honor of his 68th birthday, here is a Top 10 list of Sylvester Stallone movies.
Image courtesy of Dara Kushner/INFphoto.com