Rocky (1976) is a motion picture about an underdog boxer in a rags-to-riches American Dream story of Italian-American Rocky Balboa . Written and starring Sylvester Stallone, it also stars Talia Shire, Burt Young, and Carl Weathers. Rocky won the 1976 Academy Award for Best Picture. John G. Avildsen also won for Best Director. Stallone was nominated for Best Actor and Best Original Screenplay.