In a surprising moment, Hollywood star Sylvester Stallone discovered that Pope Francis is an avid fan of his movies. During their recent meeting at The Vatican, the Pope playfully ‘shadowboxed’ with the famed actor, leading to delightful astonishment all around.
Stallone, who gained worldwide fame for his role in the iconic movie “Rocky” and has an illustrious 55-year career, was on a family visit to The Vatican. Joining him were his wife, Jennifer Flavin, their three daughters, Sophie, Scarlet, and Sistine, and his brother, Frank Stallone.
Their interaction took an unexpected turn when Pope Francis, with a twinkle in his eye, remarked, “We grew up with your films.” In a playful mood, Stallone responded by raising his fists, jesting, “Ready? We box.” To which the Pope, much to everyone’s amusement, replied with a light-hearted jab.
The encounter, which was captured on video, quickly spread across social media. Recounting the memorable meeting on Instagram, Stallone expressed his appreciation, stating, “Very rare and special moment. I was allowed to hold the keys that open every single door in the entire Vatican City. Including the Sistine Chapel.”
While in Italy, Stallone also paid a visit to Gioia del Colle in Puglia, the birthplace of his father. In a heartfelt gesture, the actor was bestowed honorary citizenship of the town. During the visit, he held up an old key, revealing, “This was the key of [my grandfather’s] shop; he was the barber.”
He fondly concluded his speech to the locals saying, “As Rocky would say: I love you, and keep fighting.”
Pope Francis meets with American actor Sylvester Stallone and his family at a private audience in the Vatican. pic.twitter.com/f9tLUScwfj
— Vatican News (@VaticanNews) September 8, 2023