Sylvester Stallone unveils Rocky The Musical

Rocky The Musical is to open in Germany next year.

The Oscar-winning 1976 boxing movie has been turned into a stage show in a joint production between Sylvester Stallone - who portrayed the underdog pugilist - and World Heavyweight Champion boxing brothers Vladimir and Vitali Klitschko.

The musical will premiere in Hamburg, Germany, in November 2012 and the 65-year-old actor can't wait to see the story, which he wrote, on stage.

Speaking at the launch of the show at the Operettenhaus theatre in Hamburg yesterday, he said: "To see this story coming to life on a musical stage makes me proud."

As well as producing, Vladimir, 35, and Vitali, 40, will train the lead actor to make his boxing skills more believable to the audience.

Stallone will coach the individual who takes on the mantle of Rocky Balboa and will teach him how to move and act like the fictional fighter.

He added: "I imagine I will be able to help the future star of the show to learn the body language of Rocky and to develop a feeling for the character. Boxers are always tense, always moving around, and each one has his own characteristics."

Vladimir revealed watching the Rocky films with his brother when they were children inspired them to take up boxing.

The Ukrainian-born fighter said: "Seeing Sylvester Stallone in Rocky when we were kids actually was the reason for us to start boxing in the first place."

Tony Award-winning songwriter Lynn Ahrens and composer Stephen Flaherty will create the score for the film, but it will also include music from the motion picture, including Gonna Fly Now and also Survivor's Eye of the Tiger - which was the theme song for Rocky III.

In 1977, Rocky won three Academy Awards - Best Picture, Best Director for John G. Avildsen and Best Film Editing - and the film spawned five sequels, all of which starred Stallone.

The franchise - which also featured Talia Shire as Rocky's wife Adrian and Carl Weathers as his opponent Apollo Creed - has earned over $1.25 billion worldwide.

- BANG! Showbiz

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