‘Rocky III’ Has Major Ties to Naomi Watts and Frank Grillo’s New Movie

Rocky III is a very iconic movie that many fans watched when it was released in 1982. And now, the film will be featured in a new movie starring Naomi Watts and Frank Grillo. On Monday, Universal Pictures announced This is the Night will be released at Village East by Angelika in New York City for an exclusive one-week theatrical run starting on Friday, Sept. 17. It will then be available on digital everywhere on Sept. 21. 

According to the synopsis, This is the Night is set in “1982, as all of Staten Island anticipates the opening of the blockbuster film, Rocky III, and an Italian American family must confront their greatest challenges just like their onscreen hero does. In the end, they realize that there is only one way to live: Like there’s no tomorrow.” This is the night also stars Lucius Hoyos (Heroes Reborn), Jonah Hauer-King (Little Women, Howards End), River Alexander (The Way Way Back), Chase Vacnin (The Little Rascals Save the Day) and Bobby Cannavale. James DeMonaco is the director/writer, and the executive producers are Watts and Kate Driver. 

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(Photo: Universal Pictures)

“I conceived this film as a love-letter to cinema. This is the Night is a passion project I’ve been waiting to make,” DeMonaco said. “A story based in my hometown of Staten Island, the film serves as a PSA: Movies bring us–people, families–together. There’s no time like the present to celebrate movies and how they inspire us.” 

“James has a real knack for prescient storytelling, and working with him on this picture – which is such a departure from our usual type of collaborations on The Purge franchise – has been a fun and fulfilling departure,” producer Jason Blum said. “Especially now, it’s a compelling time to look at the cultural significance of theatrical movie-going and remind ourselves why it’s so critical to our society.”

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(Photo: Universal Pictures)

Grillo is no stranger to being in movies or shows that have a sports connection. From 2014-2017, Grillo starred in the series Kingdom which aired for the Audience Network. He played the role of Alvey Kulina, an owner of the gm Navy St. where is a retired MMA fighter. He helps and trains fighters along with his son. Kingdom was well-received by critics, earning an 81% score on Rotten Tomatoes.

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