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Sly & Arnie talk to Nuts!

The Expendables 2

Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger have been bringing us awesome action for decades. With the Governator back where he belongs (he did say he'd be back) and Sly recovering from multiple operations to kick ass on the big screen the action legends told Nuts what keeps them keen and why they're still so lean and mean!

How good is it to be 'back'?

Arnie: I'm so happy to be back. One day you are making policy and trying to stimulate the economy, fix the budget and educational problems then the next you're on a film set with Sly, Van Damme and Willis! The first one was almost impossible to top but this movie will blow everyone away because there's so much great action and funny scenes. It made me laugh. A lot!
Sly: We had to raise the bar because with a sequel because you've lost the element of surprise.
You were box office rivals for years. How competitive were you on set?
Sly: It was very competitive because you want to make the best film you can so no one wants to be second. That's why everyone pushes hard to establish the reputation they have, because they wanna be the best. And they usually are.
Arnie: If you grow up and try to be the best you have to be competitive... We were always competing with our action movies: Who has the most defined muscles, who has the best body...
Sly: Who has the best motor home!
Arnie: Who has the least amount of body fat... You know... Who's got the biggest gun, who kills the most people and who kills the bad guys in the most unique way. If there's a challenge your performance improves but everyone on the set of this film was very helpful. I've been out of the movies for 8 years so they thought I didn't know how to hold a gun anymore! 
How do you guys cope with the physical demands of filming?
Sly: I had my neck fused on the first film, two back operations, a shoulder operation, achilles operation... The last movie took its toll. The Doctor said, don't take any rough falls, let a stunt fella do it. But sometimes you just have to do it and, I don't know why, I just throw common sense out of the window! I can't help myself - being on a film set is a fool's paradise for me.
Arnie: I couldn't imagine coming back and doing fight scenes but this was the ideal movie to return on because you're working with the top action heroes so we share the spotlight. It's tougher as you get older and your metabolism slows down. It takes longer to recover from action scenes but so what? It's not like we don't get paid for it. And we have a good time.
How have you had to adapt your training regime to stay in shape over the years?
Sly: I've got a more scientific approach with Plyometrics (exercise designed to produce fast and powerful movements) working the kind of equipment Olympians use today. And actually it's more fun than just the regular pumping iron game.
Arnie: I do the curls first now and the squats last! Sly always wants to try the latest thing but I come from the old school. I believe in reps. I do the same exercises and eat the same food I did 50 years ago and it still works. I'm addicted to exercising and have to do something cardiovascular every day. In London it's fun because they have the Boris bikes so I go bicycle riding and sightseeing at the same time. 
The Expendables 2 features a megaton of cool one-liners. You guys have made loads of films so what are your favourites and which were the worst?
Sly: I guess my best is, "Yo, Adrian!" It's something you can't criticize but my worst would have to be all of my dialogue in Stop Or My Mom Will Shoot. Every line.
Arnie: When you're making a movie you don't know which will be the great lines people will repeat like, "I'll be back!" I remember arguing with James Cameron when we were making The Terminator. I thought I should say, "I will be back!" But he told me to say it the way he wrote it and sure enough the movie came out and it clicked so people would come up to me and ask me to say it. Oh, and I've never had a bad line!
Will there be an Expendables 3?
Sly: We're thinking about different concepts but the third movie is always the hardest, by far. The second one is a natural progression but the third one? That's when the air gets rare. I've got some ambitious ideas. Maybe we'll go into a different genre and rip off one of Arnold's old films!
Who were your role models growing up?
Sly: The first time I saw Hercules Unchained (starring former cattle cowboy Steve Reeves) something snapped in my brain. I was very thin, had no direction and the usual adolescent insecurities... Being inspired by Hercules when you're skinny is tough but that was it. I was drawn to heroes like Kirk Douglas in Vikings.
Arnie: I was around 14 years old when physical strength, athletics and looking like a He-man meant a lot to me. I loved John Wayne's movies but there was a British bodybuilder called Reg Park (the ex-military man from Yorkshire also appeared as Hercules on the big screen) who won Mr. Universe several times. He was my idol. His career was my blueprint. It motivated me and gave me a vision of what I could achieve.
What has life taught you?
Arnie: Most of the lessons I've learned in life are through sports. It's where you learn discipline and how to achieve the impossible. I've heard all my life you can't do this or you'll fail at that. I didn't listen and made it. The amount of times I tried to bench press 500 pounds and failed just made me want to try harder. But as you go through life you learn from the falls and come back stronger. No matter what you do in a life you have to have first a vision. Without it and a goal to strive for you have nothing... You have to believe in it and have faith in it. You have to chase it!
The Expendables 2 is in cinemas everywhere now.