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Creed III Snuck an Anime Easter Egg Into Michael B. Jordan’s Ring Gear

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Right now, Creed III is at the top of the domestic box office, and star Michael B. Jordan is riding high on the success. After all, this Creed movie marks the actor’s directorial debut, and co-star, Jonathan Majors, helped bring out the best fight sequence in entire IP to date. Of course, we’ve also learned this past month just how influential anime was on this blockbuster behind the scenes, and a new update confirms Adonis’ ring gear is based on a legendary anime.

The information comes straight from Raphael Phillips, a concept artist and designer who worked on Creed III. Taking to social media, the artist shared unseen art from Creed III that confirms Adonis’ boxing gear is based on the outfit worn by the protagonist of Akira. So once you see the connection, you will wonder how you missed the anime character reference to begin with.

After all, Akira’s Shotaro Kaneda has a distinct style, and he clearly favors the color red. Over the years, his red leather jacket has become a symbol for Akira as a whole, but Phillips wanted to allude to the anime protagonist in a different way. As such, the artist pulled inspiration from Shotaro’s pants as they are bright red and feature his name. These style points were incorporated into Adonis’ gear, and Phillips said he worked closely with costume designer Lizz Wolf to bring the anime look to life.

“So, [Wolf] hits me one Sunday afternoon in 2021 and was like: ‘Raph! Michael loves anime so much, what if we pitch him some Akira-inspired shorts?’ We took inspo from the design lines of Kaneda’s classic fit, and he loved it,” the artist admitted.

This nod to Akira is just one of several anime references in Creed III. There are some blatant nods as you can find posters for Lupin the 3rd in the background of one scene, and the film’s other homages are quieter. For instance, the final fight of Creed III is a love letter to some of the best anime out there including Dragon Ball Z and Naruto Shippuden. Now, we know Creed III also calls back to iconic franchises like Akira, so fans better check out it ASAP. You can watch anime like Akira over on Hulu, Crunchyroll, Funimation, and even Vudu if you’ve not watched the Katsuhiro Otomo classic yet. 

Did you already piece together this anime homage in Creed III? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below or hit me up on Twitter @MeganPetersCB.

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