Prolific actor Carl Weathers, who starred as Apollo Creed in the first four Rocky films and was the inspiration for the Creed movie franchise passed away on Thursday, his family announced. He was 76. Weathers also co-starred and had memorable scene-stealing lines in Predator, The Mandalorian, Happy Gilmore, Action Jackson, Arrested Development and dozens of other films and TV shows.
“We are deeply saddened to announce the passing of Carl Weathers,” his family said in a statement. “He died peacefully in his sleep on Thursday, February 1st, 2024. … Carl was an exceptional human being who lived an extraordinary life. Through his contributions to film, television, the arts and sports, he has left an indelible mark and is recognized worldwide and across generations. He was a beloved brother, father, grandfather, partner and friend.”
Born on January 14, 1948, in New Orleans, Weathers appeared in more than 75 films and TV shows during his 50-year screen career. He Greef Karga, the head of the Bounty Hunters Guild, in nine episodes of the Disney+ Star Wars series The Mandalorian over its three seasons. The character became close to Pedro Pascal’s Mando as the series progressed. Weathers was a 2021 Emmy nominee for the role and also directed a pair of episodes in Season 2 and 3.
Major movie A-listers started pouring in their tributes as the news hit social media.
‘Rocky’ star and creator Sylvester Stallion took to social media to give a video tribute.
“We lost a legend yesterday,” Stallone, 77, wrote in an Instagram statement, alongside an emotional tribute video. “My life was forever changed for the better the day I met Carl Weathers. Rest in power and keeping punching.”
In his video, Stallone said he “never could have accomplished what we did with Rocky without” Weathers.
“He was absolutely brilliant,” Stallone continued. “His voice, his size, his power, his athletic ability, but more importantly, his heart, his soul. It’s a horrible loss.”
Stallone stood in front of a painting of Rocky fighting Apollo in the video, noting that it captured one of the last moments he and Weathers shared inside a boxing ring.
“He was magic, and I was so fortunate to be part of his life,” Stallone concluded. “So, Apollo, keep punching.”
“Carl Weathers will always be a legend,” Schwarzenegger wrote on Instagram. “An extraordinary athlete, a fantastic actor and a great person. We couldn’t have made ‘Predator’ without him. And we certainly wouldn’t have had such a wonderful time making it.”
Michael B. Jordan, 36, who played Apollo’s son Adonis “Donnie” Creed in 2015’s sequel Creed, shared a tribute to the man who played his onscreen father. In a story posted on his Instagram account Friday, the actor-director included a photo of Weathers with the caption, “We lost a Legend.”
Although Weathers did not collaborate on Creed, in 2015 the veteran actor gave his seal of approval to Jordan after seeing the film. “You did well for