Sylvester Stallone Elbowed Richard Gere In The Head For Spilling Mustard On Him

Truth rating: 10
Sylvester Stallone on the red carpet in a dark gray suit. Richard Gere in a black suit and white shirt on the red carpet

By Brianna Morton |

Sylvester Stallone on the red carpet in a dark gray suit. Richard Gere in a black suit and white shirt on the red carpet

(Getty Images)

Sylvester Stallone and Richard Gere couldn’t be more different. That might be why the two nearly came to blows once. Apparently the incident was started by some spilled mustard. To this day, the two stars still can’t stand each other.

Stallone did a Q&A with Ain’t It Cool News in 2006 and took a question from a reader about anecdotes from his time filming The Lords of Flatbush. The Rambo actor revealed that Gere originally played Chico in the movie before being replaced by Perry King. Stallone recalled that the two “never hit it off” in their time on set. “He would strut around in his oversized motorcycle jacket like he was the baddest knight at the round table,” Stallone said of Gere.

Gere continued to rub Stallone the wrong way even while working. One day, while the two actors were practicing a fight scene, Gere grabbed Stallone roughly. Stallone says he gently told Gere to go easier on him, but Gere was deep in character and, according to Stallone, “impossible to deal with.” Though that incident was impactful enough for Stallone to recall years later, it was just a lead-up to the mustard fight.

Pardon My French’s

Stallone and Gere were filming on Coney Island that day. It was cold outside, so the two ate lunch in the warmest spot on set: the backseat of a Toyota. Stallone was already settled in and eating a hot dog. When Gere hopped in the car, Stallone noticed he was eating greasy chicken covered in mustard and flimsily wrapped in foil. Stallone warned him that his food was going to drip everywhere. According to Stallone, Gere responded, “Don’t worry about it.” Stallone was worried about it, however, and ominously replied, “If it gets on my pants, you’re gonna know about it.”

Of course, the inevitable happens. As soon as the Pretty Woman star took his first bite, a stream of grease and mustard squirted at Stallone, hitting him on the thigh. The Rocky star acted immediately. He elbowed Gere in the head and shoved him from the car. Stallone claims this is the incident that led to the role of Chico being recast.

“The director had to make a choice: one of us had to go, one of us had to stay. Richard was given his walking papers and to this day seriously dislikes me.” No wonder the two stars have never been in a movie together since. Bad blood doesn’t die. Stallone even says he believes Gere blames him for spreading the infamous “gerbil rumor,” though he denies being responsible. Some people just can’t get along, and clearly these two titans in their industry are better off separated.


"Stallone answers December 9th & 10th Questions in a double round - plus Harry's Seen ROCKY BALBOA at BNAT!!!" Ain't It Cool News, 16 Dec. 2006.

Mikkelson, David. "Richard Gere and the Gerbil." Snopes, 29 March 1998.