You might find it hard to believe, but “The Expendables” series so far has earned $800 million worldwide, and is arguably one movie away from cracking that billion dollar mark. That’s not too shabby for a decidedly B-movie franchise, that has been made on modest budgets. However, if it goes to a fourth movie, they’ll do it without the longtime face of the brand: Sylvester Stallone.
Deadline reports that Sly has decided to bow out of the series after running into creative differences with Nu Image/Millennium chief Avi Lerner over the director, script, and basically anything else you can think of. It means Stallone says goodbye to what could’ve been a payday of $20 million plus, but I doubt that was upfront, and was dependent on a back-end deal should the proposed film been a hit. (And yes, “The Expendables 3” flopped domestically, but it earned over 80% of its $214 million haul internationally). The story goes that the actor didn’t want to make a disappointing followup, but isn’t this the same guy making “Escape Plan 2” which no one wants? At any rate, Lerner thinks he can still find common ground with Stallone, so we’ll see.
Stallone will next be seen in “Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2“.