The Expendables studio boss downplays Sylvester Stallone exit rumours
The veteran action man heaped praise on his co-star Jason Statham as rumours continued to swirl over his involvement in the next The Expendables release.
Movie studio boss Avi Lerner has played down reports suggesting Sylvester Stallone has quit his The Expendables film franchise following creative differences between the pair.
The Hollywood hardman hit headlines on Saturday (01Apr17) amid rumours suggesting he had walked away from a planned The Expendables 4 after falling out over key aspects of the project with Nu Image/Millennium boss Lerner.
According to Deadline.com, Stallone and the film chief failed to see eye-to-eye on the script and who should direct the sequel, while they also allegedly disagreed over which visual effects firm to use.
The lack of progress on the action movie sparked claims Stallone would not return to his role as Barney Ross, the leader of an elite team of mercenaries who embark on perilous missions, despite reportedly being offered more than $20 million (£16 million) to reprise the character, but Lerner is confident they will be able to settle their differences in due course, as they have in the past.
"We've got disagreements with Sly, but we've had them for over a year and a half," the producer told Deadline. "Right now, each one has an opinion. We agreed on 95 per cent of things, but there are certain things in production we don't agree on. I don't think it's over, but write whatever you want. In my opinion, it's not dead."
The Creed actor has yet to comment on the news, but on Saturday (01Apr17), he took to Instagram to heap praise on his close pal and The Expendables franchise co-star Jason Statham.
Alongside a photo of the pair on the set of a previous Expendables movie, Stallone wrote, "Throughout your life you'll find very few stand up people, who you know have got your back and are the REAL DEAL... @jasonstatham is that kind of man, it's always a great (time) with him and will be in the future...
"i've seen this man do extraordinary acts of bravery, For example in the first expendables he rode on the OUTSIDE of a 60-year-old plane doing death defying dive bombs at 200 miles an hour, and almost nearly drowning to death in a truck accident on a movie set, and still went on working. The real deal...@jasonstatham".
Stallone launched first The Expendables movie, which he also co-wrote and directed, with Statham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren, Randy Couture, Terry Crews, Steve Austin, and Mickey Rourke in 2010.
He has since released two sequels, in 2012 and 2014, featuring additional big screen action icons Jean-Claude Van Damme, Chuck Norris, Bruce Willis, Mel Gibson, Wesley Snipes, and Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Expendables 4 was slated for release in 2018, but so far, only Schwarzenegger and Statham are said to have officially signed on.
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