March of this year, the Golden Raspberry Award Foundation gave the Razzy
for the worst actor of the twentieth century to Sylvester Stallone.
After reigning as a box office superstar during the 70s and 80s, Stallone's
career over the last several years has taken a nose dive. He hasn't
appeared on screen in three years, and his last film, Cop Land,
which he saw as a way to break out of his action hero image and do some
"serious acting," earned him little respect from audiences
fact, he says in Susan Faludi's book Stiffed: The Betrayal of
the Modern Man, that between 1998 and 1999 he didn't make a
dime. He blamed studio bigwigs at Miramax and his agent for blocking
his attempts to reinvent himself as a serious actor.
now, with the release of Get Carter, a remake of a 60s
Michael Caine film, and two more films currently in production, Stallone's
fortunes may be about to change. The rise to stardom, his transformation
into a superstar, the subsequent fall and the possibility of a comeback
are all clearly marked in Sly's horoscope. As we will see, Pluto, the
planet of transformation, plays a prominent role in the Sylvester Stallone
story—a story we might call “The Anatomy of a Metamorphosis.”
Need to Relate and Achieve
Born July 6, 1946, in New York City at 7:20 pm, Stallone has the
Sun in Cancer in the Seventh House, making him a very emotional person with
a great need to relate to others for fulfillment. His Moon is at the
very top of his chart in Libra, conjunct Jupiter and the Midheaven.
The Moon's placement gives him a subconscious drive for achievement
and confidence in himself (Jupiter). Individuals with Tenth House Moons
often achieve wide public recognition, but typically their popularity
is as inconstant as the Moon itself.
Sun receives a wide square aspect from Neptune, an aspect found prominently
in the horoscopes of actors. Neptune likes to pretend. As a child with
slurred speech and drooping eyelids (the result of a severed facial
nerve caused by forceps during his delivery), and a name like Sylvester,
he had a difficult time in school, especially growing up in New York's
Hell's Kitchen neighborhood. Pretending to be like the heroes in comic
books and movies was a necessary escape mechanism for him.
Cages at the Zoo
wanted to act, but was discouraged by teachers at the University of
Miami, so he dropped out and went to New York after his mother, astrologer
Jacqueline Stallone, predicted he would make it in films as a writer.
He wrote several unproduced screenplays under various pseudonyms, working
at odd jobs to pay the rent. He cleaned cages at the zoo, hawked fish
and demonstrated pizzas in the window of an Italian restaurant. Sly's
Sixth House of work contains the unconventional planet Uranus in Gemini.
Uranus would provide the erratic work history, and Gemini is an indication
of writing ability.
the early 70s, while transiting Pluto moved back and forth three times
over Stallone's natal Neptune, he experienced what might be described
as a period of creative gestation, during which he burned with the desire
(Pluto) to act (Neptune), yet success seemed elusive. He appeared in
a number of low-budget films and got small parts in films starrring
Woody Allen and Robert Mitchum, but the big break was still to come.
is known for providing sudden flashes of inspiration. After a role in
The Lords of Flatbush, Sly went to Hollywood. There he
saw a fight between Muhammed Ali and an unknown boxer named Chuck Wepner,
who "went the distance." Suddenly, in typical Uranian fashion,
he had the basis for Rocky. He wrote the screenplay in
Pluto, The Planet of Metamorphosis
timing was perfect, because in 1975, when he began filming Rocky,
Pluto, the planet of transformation and power, was finally through with
his Neptune and was moving on toward his Midheaven. As it continued
through his Ninth House of aspirations, his Neptunian dream of acting
and writing came true, and he earned two Academy Award Nominations.
After that initial success, his career stalled for the next several
years as he continued with Rocky II and a film based on
a novel he had written, Paradise Alley. Neither were especially
in 1981, Pluto once again became active, passing over Sly's Moon-Jupiter-Midheaven
combination. He underwent a true Plutonian metamorphosis that year when
he made First Blood, playing David Morrell's alienated
Vietnam vet John Rambo. Pluto's power to change even altered Stallone's
body. With intense physical workouts, he redesigned his whole physical
appearance. Compare his somewhat pudgy physique in the first two Rocky
movies with his sculpted body image in First Blood and
his next film, Rocky III.
Billion Dollars at the Box Office
Blood was a tremendous hit, giving Stallone two mega-franchises
(Rocky and Rambo) that together have grossed nearly $2 billion at the
box office. Big money is something else that Pluto brings. Sly, riding
the wave created by Pluto's transit, was now a superstar. Successes
continued as Pluto moved through his Tenth House of career and prominence.
But in 1990, Pluto moved into his Eleventh House. He may have started
taking success for granted, and after a series of poorly selected films,
his star began to fall.
the end of 1998, Pluto entered Stallone's Twelfth House of endings and
behind-the-scenes activities. The offers stopped coming in. His income
during this period came from off-screen (Twelfth House) voice-overs
for a Lipton iced tea commercial, and the animated film Antz.
This transit is often a period of "agonizing reappraisals,"
when we suddenly come to the end of something—a lifestyle, a career,
a relationship. In the Susan Faludi book, Stallone is quoted as saying
at this time he felt as though he were in limbo.
now Sly is ready for a comeback, and once again Pluto is coming to his
aid. Still in his Twelfth House, the planet of power is sending favorable
aspects (trining) to Sly's Mercury-Pluto conjunction in the
Eighth House of his chart. The Eighth House is all about comebacks, the phoenix rising
from the ashes and wealth. Other favorable aspects from Uranus and Jupiter
in the coming year also point to better times ahead.
Get Carter has been less than a big hit, and might have
been better titled Forget Carter, Stallone is now filming
Driven—a car racing film he has wanted to do for years—with
action director Renny Harlen. Sly has high hopes that this project will
return him to the status of box office champ, but with Pluto still in
the Twelfth House of behind-the-scenes activities, perhaps his best
chance for success lies more with activities behind the camera, such
as writing, producing and directing.
path he chooses over the next several years, the planets say that one
way or the other, Sly, like his underdog boxing hero, Rocky, will not
only go the distance, he may even go "over the top."