Mike Bedigan and Shane Ryan, PA
Thu, 16 February 2023 at 3:01 am GMT
Michael B Jordan says films about an “underdog story” appeal to audiences because it shows them they can overcome their own challenges in life.
The US actor said watching a character “go through the same type of struggles and overcome them” can inspire people to do the same.
Jordan stars in upcoming film Creed III, which he also directed, which is the ninth instalment of the Rocky franchise.
The movie sees Adonis Creed (Jordan) reunited with a childhood friend and former boxing prodigy, Damian Anderson (Jonathan Majors), which quickly escalates into a fierce rivalry.
Speaking at the European premiere of the film in London on Wednesday, Jordan told the PA news agency: “I think lots of films have a certain sense of appeal (with) the underdog story.
“I think we all feel like underdogs in some type of way in life, you know? Life’s hard – we go through challenges and hardship.
“So when you see a character go through those same type of struggles, and they’re able to overcome them, you know, in a massive way, it’s almost like, we can do it too.
“That’s why there’s been so many boxing films, and that’s why people love these movies so much.”
Creed III is Jordan’s feature directorial debut and he said it was important to show “honest portrayals” of black men rather than stereotypes.
“It’s extremely important to show all sides of being a black man, not stereotypes, but just really honest portrayals,” he told PA.
“From the softer emotional side to… putting on shields and (becoming) chameleons when you have to walk around in his world, being a person of colour.
“That’s something that… naturally, inherently, I put into all my films and all my projects, and to have the opportunity to direct it, I just did it my way.”
The Creed trilogy began as a spin-off from the Rocky films made famous by Sylvester Stallone, who mentored Jordan’s character in the first instalment in 2015.
Jordan was joined at the event in Leicester Square by co-stars Florian Munteanu, Tony Bellew, Tessa Thompson and Majors.
Majors said he had enjoyed playing Anderson as the villain of the film, but added that his character was a “broken man” with a “deep emotional life”.
“He represents many things, you know, chiefly amongst those things, I think, is he represents the past of our hero on the screen, and he is here to help him move forward,” he told PA.
“But in doing so he moves forward himself.
“I like the idea of really going for your dreams and ambitions, like your hero.
“But you just don’t have the rules that a hero has. And to me, that’s the difference. If you make your own rules, if you follow the rules, that’s the difference between a villain and a hero.”
Majors also stars as supervillain Kang the Conqueror in Marvel’s latest blockbuster, Ant-Man And The Wasp: Quantumania.
Creed III is due for release in UK cinemas on March 3.