Rip Carl Wheathers

Rip Carl Wheathers who portrayed Apollo Creed in the first four “Rocky” films alongside Sylvester Stallone, has passed away Thursday, his manager Matt Luber confirmed to Variety. He was 76.

Weathers also starred in the 1987 “Predator” and had a memorable role in Adam Sandler’s “Happy Gilmore.” He was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actor in a Drama Series for his work on the “Star Wars” series “The Mandalorian.”

He voiced Combat Carl in the “Toy Story” franchise and played a fictionalized version of himself in a recurring role on “Arrested Development.” His other credits include TV series such as “Street Justice,” “Colony,” “The Shield,” “Chicago Justice,” and “Brothers,” and films like “Close Encounters of the Third Kind,” “Death Hunt,” and “The Comebacks.”

After working with Sandler in the 1996 golf comedy “Happy Gilmore,” Weathers briefly reprised his role in “Little Nicky” and voiced a character in Sandler’s animated Hanukkah comedy “Eight Crazy Nights.”

Born on January 14, 1948, in New Orleans, Weathers engaged in a variety of sports including boxing, football, soccer, wrestling, and gymnastics. He played college football at San Diego State University and helped the Aztecs win the 1969 Pasadena Bowl. While at SDSU, Weathers also earned a degree in theater arts, but in 1970 signed with the Oakland Raiders as an undrafted free agent and played in eight NFL games as a linebacker over two seasons.

Following his stint in professional football, Weathers shifted more seriously to acting, landing small roles in Arthur Marks’ blaxploitation films “Bucktown” and “Friday Foster,” as well as TV series including “Good Times,” “Kung Fu,” “Cannon,” and “Starsky and Hutch.”

Rip Carl Wheathers

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