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Sly: "Happy Hanukkah"
The search for Sylvester Stallone’s Ukrainian roots in the 1980s was carried out by the KGB on the personal instructions of Mikhail Gorbachev. That was his gratitude to Stallone’s mother, the famous astrologer Jacqueline Labofish, who made a personal horoscope for Gorbachev and predicted him the future position as the head of the USSR.
Stallone’s roots were found in Odessa. Sylvester’s great-grandmother, Rose Ethel Labofish, came from a wealthy Jewish family, who owned weaving factories and real estate in the center of Odessa. The family immigrated to the United States in 1888.
In 2010, at the premiere of the film “The Expendables” in Kyiv, Sylvester Stallone jokingly said: “Someday I will retire and settle in Odessa. But for the time being there is a lot of work.”
Sly’s career started rapidly in 1976 with the movie Rocky. After watching the fight between Muhammad Ali and Chuck Wepner, Stallone wrote a script for the film in three days, which the United Artists motion picture company agreed to buy for $350,000. Stallone, who had only 106 dollars then, declined the offer, since he wasn’t even considered for the lead role.
The script was so good and the author was so insistent that United Artists decided to experiment. The script was bought for $20,000 plus 10% of the box office receipts, and Stallone starred in the lead role that kicked off his stellar career. Rocky became the highest-grossing film of the year and grossed $225 million, plus three Oscars and one Golden Globe.
The box office receipts of all films in which Stallone took part as an actor, screenwriter and director have already reached more than $3bn, and he is still not going to retire.