Stallone irked by 'hard man' image

Salisbury Journal: Sylvester Stallone onstage at the London Palladium Sylvester Stallone onstage at the London Palladium

Sylvester Stallone has admitted he still gets worked up over the perception he is just a thuggish actor, with no more strings to his bow.

The Hollywood action veteran - who was nominated twice for Oscars and Baftas for Rocky and has written more than 20 films and directed eight - revealed his frustrations during a 90-minute question and answer session with Jonathan Ross.

"It depends what day of the week it is. Sometimes it doesn't bother me, the next day I'm like, 'Where do they live?'," he told the packed audience at the London Palladium.

"All of the Rockys, I wrote every word but still people assume you are Rocky. They still think you are this muscle head. One day I think I've got it together, the next day I want to kill everyone," he joked.

The lack of recognition is not limited to film critics though, even his current Grudge Match co-star Robert De Niro seemed to take a dim view of his abilities.

He said: "We were doing a scene and I said Bobby, 'Is it me or do you feel the same way? The first time I'm doing a scene with you I think you're terrible. I'm saying my lines, but I'm not believing anything you're saying back to me, you're just winging it, you're looking at the lines, you go back and forth'.

"And he said, 'I thought you sucked too'," Sylvester recalled. The two are in reality great friends, as he is with many of his contemporaries.

But it is the British connection in his successful Expendables franchise who Sly admitted is his current favourite, and he revealed in the third film - due in UK cinemas in August - Jason Statham might finally take a knocking.

"You may see history made in the next Expendables. I actually believe there's a bloody nose on the horizon," he said.

"We have a great rapport together. You know he doesn't do that very often, he's very straight [in his films], but when he smiles, when he jokes around, he's good."

The 67-year-old has left the door open for a return to his iconic roles ... in some form. "I'd love to do another Rambo, but maybe if he works in Las Vegas," he joked. "Maybe it's run its course."

Stallone is due to have a supporting role in Creed, where he will take on the role of a trainer.

:: Grudge Match is in UK cinemas on January 24th.

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