Michael B. Jordan returns as Adonis “Donny” Creed and makes his directorial debut in Creed III — and the just-released trailer promises the boxer will face a battle with the past. Unfortunately for Creed, that past is personified by a just-out-of-prison rival fighter played by Jonathan Majors.
The film arrives seven years after the original Creed, directed by Ryan Coogler, in which the white-collar Creed, son of Rocky Balboa’s rival-turned-friend Apollo Creed (Carl Weathers) took up boxing to battle his unresolved issues with his father. In Creed III, we learn that Creed had a rougher childhood than the previous films let on — he got into some altercation with the law alongside a friend who ended up in prison. That friend grew up to be… you guessed it. Majors’ character is named Damian Anderson, and he tells Creed: “Try spending half your life in a cell, watching somebody else live your life.”
Also Read: Ralph Macchio on How Creed Shaped Cobra Kai
As the trademark Rocky–Creed workout scenes attest, Anderson has turned his resentment into muscle and fighting skills. Things turn, as they so often do, to the boxing ring. We hope Creed didn’t skimp on his workout montages, but this being a Creed film, of course he won’t. (You can watch the Creed III trailer above.)
Other than the whole guy-who-was-like-a-brother-and-now-wants-to-destroy-him thing, things seem to be going well for Creed. His relationship with Bianca, played by Tessa Thompson, seems stronger than ever, and she’s very much in his real and metaphorical corner.
“Now we’re past talking,” Creed tells her about Anderson. “Then maybe you just have to fight him,” she agrees.
Nowhere in sight: Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone), who seems to have gracefully handed off the Rocky dynasty. But don’t worry: You can still catch him switching gears to star as an Oklahoma mobster in the upcoming Tulsa King. It brings things full circle, kind of — remember when Balboa used to rough up deadbeats for the mob back in the original 1976 Rocky?
Creed III, directed by and starring Michael B. Jordan, is in theaters March 3, 2023.