Why Jackie Chan Turned Down 4 Sylvester Stallone Movies

Why Jackie Chan Turned Down 4 Sylvester Stallone Movies

Over the years, Jackie Chan has turned down roles in four of Sylvester Stallone’s movies. Here’s why the two have yet to make a movie together.


During his career, Jackie Chan has turned down four different Sylvester Stallone movies. The kung fu icon and the Rocky actor are without question two of the biggest action stars in cinematic history. However, the two have yet to make a movie together.

Over the decades, studios have paired Chan with various A-list names in the movie industry. For instance, Chan worked with fellow kung fu legend Jet Li in 2008 when he made The Forgotten Kingdom. The American productions he’s been involved with have featured actors like Owen Wilson, Chris Tucker, and more. In recent years, he worked alongside Pierce Brosnan in The Foreigner and Arnold Schwarzenegger in Iron Mask. While his long career has allowed him many opportunities to make movies with other action stars, there’s still quite a few he’s never shared the big screen with, such as Dolph Lundgren, Jean-Claude Van Damme, Chuck Norris, and Stallone.

While it’s true that Chan and Stallone haven’t acted together yet, there have certainly been chances for it to happen. But, Chan has turned Stallone down on four separate occasions to appear in his films. According to Chan’s autobiography, Never Grow Up, the first was Demolition Man. Before casting Wesley Snipes as the villain, Stallone tried to get Chan to accept the part, but the Hong Kong actor was opposed to playing a villain, as it would go against his image. The second offer was for the fourth Rambo movie, with the role in question being a drug dealer. In Never Grow Up, Chan said he felt it wasn’t right for him, presumably due to the same issues. Years later, Stallone wanted Chan for Expendables 2 and Expendables 3 [via CinemaBlend]. In the case of the second film, scheduling conflicts got in the way, and the concern that he’d get a small role kept him from signing on for the third installment.

Will A Jackie Chan & Sylvester Stallone Movie Ever Happen?

While Chan has so far avoided taking roles in Sylvester Stallone’s movies, the actor has made it clear that he does indeed have an interest in working with him. In fact, one almost happened in the form of Snafu. Chan and Stallone were supposed to work on it together, but issues related to the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in John Cena getting Stallone’s role, and even now the film still hasn’t been released yet. For now, there are no official plans for Chan and Stallone to make a movie together, but if it were to happen, it’s likely they’d be a duo, especially since neither is known for playing villains.

A team-up movie seems to be what Chan has always wanted from a Sylvester Stallone collaboration. When talking about the possibility of being in Expendables 4, Chan claimed that he wants to do a film where the focus is on just the two of them, as opposed to a cast full of action heroes. If such a story ever presents itself in the future, it’s possible that Jackie Chan and Sylvester Stallone will eventually get to fight side-by-side in a theatrical film.

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