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Arnold Schwarzenegger reveals how he tricked Sylvester Stallone into doing flop movie during peak rivalry

Schwarzenegger and Stallone battled it out for much of the 1980s and early 1990s to be Hollywood’s top action star and have since become friends.
Premiere Of Warner Bros. Pictures' "Creed" - Red Carpet
Arnold Schwarzenegger and Stallone at the premiere of "Creed" on Nov. 19, 2015 in Westwood, California.Todd Williamson / Getty Images
/ Source: TODAY

Arnold Schwarzenegger is revealing how he tricked Sylvester Stallone into taking a part in a film the former governor knew would flop.

In the special “TMZ Presents Arnold & Sly: Rivals, Friends, Icons” which aired April 23 on FOX, Schwarzenegger recounted how he read the script for the 1992 film “Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot” and knew both he and Stallone would be up for the role.

Schwarzenegger wasn't exactly thrilled about the opportunity, so he and his agent decided to come up with a plan to trick Stallone into going after it.

Schwarzenegger was sure to note that he never spoke to Stallone about it, “but it was very clear that his agent was telling my agent, ‘Look, Sly is interested in doing it, but I don’t know if it’s the right thing for him. Let me know what you guys are thinking.’ And then my agent said, ‘Well you know, Arnold really loves it. I think it’s fantastic.’”

Schwarzenegger said he then called the director of the film, Roger Spottiswoode, to talk, and then his agent told Stallone’s agent “‘he’s really into it.’”

“And then of course (Stallone’s) agent, knowing that he’s competitive with me, he said, ‘Cannot let that happen,’” Schwarzenegger said. “He then called the studio right away and says, ‘Look, you got to give this to Sly. Don’t give this to Schwarzenegger, you got to give this to Sly.’ And they said fine. Sly got it.”

Schwarzenegger said that afterward, he was “absolutely in heaven” his subterfuge worked.

“I was, of course, absolutely in heaven, because I felt like the only way I could catch up with him is if he (had) a stumble.”

“Can you get more Machiavellian?” Stallone said in the special.

The movie, which follows a mother and her interference with her son's career as a police sergeant, currently has a 21% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Shortly after it hit theaters in 1992, The Washington Post's Rita Kempley called it "your worst nightmare."