Things go boom. People die. That’s pretty much the extent of the Expendables franchise, right? So why the deuce is making an Expendables 4, which was scheduled to roll out next year, so hard? Why are things so complicated that Sylvester Stallone is now in a position to leave the series? It seems that guns, geriatrics, and Hollywood don’t mesh together as easily as one would assume.

According to Deadline, Stallone, who directed the first film in the series, is rumored to be finished with the property. He was set to play Barney Ross again one last time, and to the bill of $20 million dollars, which would have been Stallone’s biggest film pay day ever. For that amount of money, one would think Stallone would roll out of bed, drink some raw eggs with a side of HGH, and be happily filmed waiving a semi-auto rifle around yelling some mush-mouthed action-guy talk. But nope. Apparently, creativity matters. For reals, it does. Highly recommend checking out Inferno: The Making of Expendables. Stallones thought process and care is more deep than anyone has given him credit for.

Stallone has, reportedly, had some disagreements with Nu Image/Millennium chief Avi Lerner. Stallone and Lerner have had it out over the VFX house to use for Expendables 4. They also couldn’t agree on a script or director either.

The two have had some differences before making the series, but nothing that couldn’t be hashed out over a couple of cigars. Now though, the two butting creatives just can’t seem to come to terms. Coming off his Oscar nom with Creed, and given his age (70), Stallone seems to be getting more selective and is less interested in making a disappointing sequel. Making these movies also takes a toll on his body, with each film having inflicted the aging star with moderate to severe injury – In Expendables 3 Stallone took a fall and permanently damaged his back, leaving the hospital with metal infused to his spine.

But hope is not all lost.

Lerner acknowledged the differences he has had with Stallone, but wasn’t willing announce an official seperation just yet. “We’ve got disagreements with Sly, but we’ve had them for over a year and a half,” he told Deadline. “Right now, each one has an opinion. We agreed on 95% 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.”

If Stallone does leave, there is no word if Millenium would continue without him. Likely, and this is just speculation, they will. While the Expendable films are not stellar pieces of cinema by any stretch of the imagination, they served as an excuse to see some of the worlds most famous action stars together kicking ass. That’s a concept that will always sell. Perhaps they’ll carry on with the supposed all-female Expendables aptly titled ‘Expendabelles‘ that has been kicked around, which would be welcome in this age where women dominate the box office.


Category: Film

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