Philly's Joe Frazier statue is lookin official

Swiffness! Members Posts: 10,128 ✭✭✭✭✭
edited September 2014 in From the Cheap Seats
That Rocky statue was a ? movie prop made for Rocky III. They actually banned it from the Art Museum for 20 years because they felt it was a movie prop and not "real art". So chill with that hate. BTW Bernard Hopkins bought his old gym and is turning it into a community center. You out-of-towners better go back to ? about snowballs at Santa or summin.




Busloads of tourists line up every day in Philadelphia to take photos with a statue of Rocky Balboa, the fictional heavyweight fighter made famous by Sylvester Stallone.

Will they line up for pictures with a sculpture of real hometown champion Joe Frazier?

"Properly promoted, I think it would be much, much bigger than Rocky," said Robin Hazel, who was visiting the city recently from Ottawa, Canada. "Rocky is great, it's a movie. But Joe Frazier's real. And he's Philadelphia."

Artist Stephen Layne is finishing up a 9-foot-tall clay version of "Smokin' Joe" that captures Philly's local hero in mid-punch. Frazier became the first fighter to beat Muhammad Ali when he outslugged "The Greatest" for the heavyweight title in 1971.

Steering clear of the victorious, raised arms stance of the Rocky statue — which was originally a prop in "Rocky III" — Layne instead found his spark in a photo of Frazier flooring Ali with his powerful left hook. The moment captured in the sculpture reflects the work ethic of Frazier and the city he called home, said Layne.

"That pose of glory ... the Rocky pose, I don't think that's quite the vibe of Philadelphia," Layne said while working in his studio in the Fishtown neighborhood.

Two of Frazier's daughters, Weatta Collins and Renae Martin, said they are thrilled with Layne's work, noting the artist has been receptive to feedback from family members as the piece progressed.

"It's really long overdue," Collins said. "We're very happy that it's finally being done."

Layne plans to finish the clay work by the end of September. The statue will then go through a molding process before being cast in bronze and installed at Xfinity Live, an entertainment complex by the city's three sports stadiums. Frazier fought near the site at the now-demolished Spectrum.

The unveiling of the 1,800-pound likeness is expected next spring, probably in April, said Richard Hayden, an attorney for Xfinity Live.

The sculpture's location will be off the beaten path for visitors — about five miles south of the Rocky statue, which stands by the Philadelphia Museum of Art steps that Stallone famously ran up. Collins said her family is working with tourism officials to ensure sightseeing maps include the Frazier memorial.

Arnaud du Croix, of Veenendaal, the Netherlands, took a picture with Rocky recently because the movies were "part of my youth." He questioned how many foreign tourists would recognize Frazier's name, though as a boxing fan he enthusiastically supports the Smokin' Joe tribute.

"It's a bit silly to have a statue of someone that was never a professional boxer," du Croix said of Rocky. "It made the city of Philadelphia very famous, but they should have a statue of a great boxer — of Joe Frazier."

btw me & my pops got to kick it with Smokin Joe at a rib cookoff for a hour and dude kept talking about how he hated Ali lol (i love telling this story)

"THAT ? ! I WON ALL 3 OF DEM FIGHTS! LOOK AT 'IM! HE CAN'T EVEN TALK NOW!!!!" - direct quote from Joe Frazier lmfao

when my dad asked him to give me advice, he told me to be a great fighter you gotta learn to give up things.....drinking, smoking, staying up late......."unless you wanna wind up like Ali"

i was shocked like wow that's ? up lol

yeah, he let Ali sleep on his couch, helped him get reinstated, and then dude called him a ?

he hated Ali