MEXICO CITY (January 5, 2007) — Sylvester Stallone defended boxing, praised the hard work of Mexicans and dished out some jabs against U.S. plans to build a wall on its southern border, as the 60-year-old actor visited Mexico City to promote his sixth “Rocky” film.
Stallone said Thursday that “Rocky Balboa,” the latest installment in the underdog saga of the Italian Stallion, shows an ordinary man fighting back against life’s difficulties represented by his stronger ring opponents.
“It’s like bullfighting or certain sports where you understand the brutality,” he told reporters. “The thing is you have two men who are prepared; two men who have trained for this and know exactly what they’re doing. It’s not like two strong men attacking strangers.”
In “Rocky Balboa,” an MGM Pictures release, the aging scrapper is running a restaurant when a computer-simulated bout inspires him to put the gloves back on. In one scene, his character defends his restaurant’s immigrant cooks and waiters against slanderous comments.
“I support Mexicans who work in my country,” he said, adding that the United States depends on the hard work of Latinos to keep running.
In comments to Mexican media later, Stallone criticized plans to build 700 miles of fence along the border as an immigration-control measure.
Such a fence was “crazy” and “ridiculous,” he said, arguing that nations should be able to interact without being divided by walls.
The Mexican government has railed against the fence with former President Vicente Fox comparing it to the Berlin Wall.