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Stallone II

After years of muscling his way across the screen, Sylvester Stallone seeks a different label: serious actor.
Gordon Mott
From the Print Edition:
Sylvester Stallone, Mar/Apr 98

(continued from page 2)

Stallone: Well aesthetically, it's beautiful. I collect art, and quite often I'll look at a cigar and if it's blemished or the color isn't quite right or I see some fraying or the lines are not architectural, I'm turned off by it. This seems to have everything. And the band is kind of like a Renaissance filigree. It has a kind of bold, what's the word I'm looking for, almost Inquisitional-type X. The band almost looks like a piece of metal; again, the band is so aesthetically pleasing. I think image has a lot to do with cigars and people don't quite understand enough that there is the aesthetic quality. Just the band says it's not just a cigar. I don't like the [Cuban] Cohiba band. I know that sounds odd, but I don't. Not a lot of thought went into the band.

CA: Why, because it's so modern?

Stallone: I don't like it. The old Partagas were fantastic. Really some great old bands. I wish they'd go back to that more often. That Art Nouveau and that kind of Gibson girl look; I guess it's Neo-Classicism.

CA: Most of the ones you describe are examples of turn-of-the-century lithographic art. Do you like that?

Stallone: It's so good. Compared to a modernizing look, which I think defeats the heritage of a cigar. I think of a cigar as old. I think of it as reaching back into antiquity; though it doesn't go that far back, I think of it as that. And I think it is one of those things like a fine wine that has moved on into the modern era but the beauty of it is ancient. I hate to see the modernization of the cigar. I think there is something very interesting about, like an old bottle of Lafite, looking at the decaying label; it is a lot more exciting than looking at something made an hour ago. I don't care how flashy the label is. I don't like a modern label on wine. I know it's odd, but that's the way I feel.

CA: Is it the tradition then?

Stallone: I'm a traditionalist.

CA: Do you have a perfect metaphor for what a cigar is?

Stallone: I guess you could say that a good cigar is a magic carpet ride. It really transports you to another realm of consciousness where, when a cigar is good and the conversation is good, you are now into a heightened sense of awareness. You are as close as you can get to an altered state without drugs as possible, I believe. I believe that a good cigar, a glass of wine and a good conversation is as close to euphoria as you can get in a legal sense.

CA: Could you elaborate on that scene?

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