The thought of seeing Robert DeNiro face off in the ring with Sylvester Stallone in a film about aging fighters is something I think a lot of film fans can dig. Stallone’s already done the aging fighter thing, giving Rocky an improper sendoff in V before finally getting it right in Rocky Balboa. Then of course there’s DeNiro, who starred in that other definitive boxing movie, Raging Bull. The idea behind Grudge Match, two aging fighters facing off for one last bout, could work with this fun bit of stunt casting. But as a comedy? Directed by Peter Segal of Get Smart and 50 First Dates? Well, that’s something else entirely. Take it away Deadline:
Robert DeNiro and Sylvester Stallone are now set to play the fighters who square off in the ring, and the studio has greenlighted the film that will be directed by Peter Segal. Tim Kelleher wrote the script and the most recent draft is by Entourage architect Doug Ellin, with Billy Gerber and Mark Steven Johnson producing with Michael Ewing.
This premise could work but it seems ripe for a dramatic take. That it sounds like parody is cause for concern. Segal’s proven he can direct a decent film (Tommy Boy) but his filmography since doesn’t inspire good faith. DeNiro hasn’t seemed interested in making a good picture for sometime either. And yet Stallone’s revival continues strong.
Stallone and DeNiro did good work together in Cop Land. This is stunt casting for sure, but they’ve got me interested. You?