Rocky star Carl Weathers passes away at 76
Best known for his iconic role as Apollo Creed in the Rocky franchise, Weathers had an extensive career in film and television, with notable credits in Predator, Toy Story 4, Happy Gilmore, and The Mandalorian.
The news of his death, which occurred peacefully in his sleep, was confirmed by his family through a statement released on Thursday, February 1st, 2024: "We are deeply saddened to announce the passing of Carl Weathers. He died peacefully in his sleep on Thursday, February 1st, 2024."
The statement continued, describing Weathers as an exceptional individual who led an extraordinary life, making significant contributions to film, television, the arts, and sports. His impact is recognized globally and spans generations. The family emphasized his roles as a beloved brother, father, grandfather, partner, and friend.
WHO IS CARL WEATHERS?
Born on January 14, 1948, in New Orleans, Weathers boasted a career that spanned over five decades, accumulating more than 75 film and TV credits. In his most recent role as Greef Karga in The Mandalorian, part of the Star Wars universe, Weathers not only showcased his acting skills but also directed several episodes, earning a Primetime Emmy nomination for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series.
Before his acting career, Weathers achieved success as a professional American football player, contributing to the Oakland Raiders' victory in the AFC West Division Title.
However, his enduring legacy rests in his portrayal of Apollo Creed in the Rocky movies, where he played a pivotal role in the first film by giving the journeyman boxer Rocky Balboa a title shot. Unfortunately, his character met a tragic end in the ring against Russian heavyweight Ivan Drago in Rocky IV, following appearances in Rocky II and III.
Initially recognized for his strength in his early career, Weathers also starred alongside Arnold Schwarzenegger in Predator. Furthermore, he lent his voice to Combat Carl in the Oscar-winning Toy Story 4 and played the character Derick “Chubbs” Peterson in Happy Gilmore, serving as golf coach to Adam Sandler's character. An amusing element in the film was Chubbs' wooden replacement hand, a comedic reference to his character's earlier loss of a hand to an alligator.