Sylvester Stallone Sells Memoir ‘The Steps’ To William Morrow In Heated Auction, Book Set For 2025 Publication

EXCLUSIVE: After what was described to us as a “heated” auction, William Morrow has nabbed the rights to The Steps, a new memoir penned by veteran actor and three-time Oscar nominee Sylvester Stallone.

William Morrow – a HarperCollins imprint – will publish the memoir in the U.S. next year. The book was sold by UTA to Mauro DePreta at William Morrow. All parties declined to discuss financial terms, but sources told us negotiations concluded around a seven-figure sum.

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The Steps was one of the hottest titles at this year’s buzzy, Hollywood-powered London Book Fair. Nonfiction heads from all of the publishing industry’s biggest houses chased the project based on the strength of a passage from a sample proposal written by Stallone. We understand that Stallone took less money to team up with DePreta and William Morrow because of their enthusiasm for the project.

The book has been described as “deeply personal” with a narrative shaped by teachable stories from Stallone’s life and career similar to the hybrid memoir/self-help scope of Matthew McConaughey’s bestseller Greenlights. The book’s title playfully borrows its name from the seminal running scene outside the Philadelphia Museum of Art from Stallone’s Rocky series.

“The title was all Sly,” Byrd Leavell, co-head of UTA Publishing, told us this morning from New York. “He came back to us with that thinking about the double meaning of Philly and running up the steps. But he also wanted to write a book that could help people.”

The Steps follows Sly, the intimate documentary Stallone released with Netflix last year. The Rambo and Tuylsa King actor was also a recent guest on the Unwaxed podcast hosted by his daughters, Sistine and Sophia, where he discussed his early life and career. But “there’s still so much to learn” about the Oscar nominee, Leavell said.

“The documentary came out, but even that only just grazed the surface,” he added. “As much as Sly has been in the public eye for a very long time, he is also deeply private.

“This book will show that Sly is a man to whom nothing has come easily. He earned everything,” Leavell said. “He just knew to bet on himself because he believed in himself. And that’s the message within many of his movies: personal triumph overcoming adversity. This book is going to further tap into that and allow people to truly understand why they loved all of his movies so much.”

Stallone is best known for his seminal Rocky series. He received his first two Oscar nominations (best actor and screenplay) in 1977 for the first film in the series. Stallone went on to write and direct four more Rocky films between 1979 and 2006. John G. Avildsen, who directed the first film, returned to direct another in 1990 from a screenplay once again penned by Stallone. His other credits include First Blood (1982) and the subsequent Rambo film series, The Expendables films, and dozens of others. He also toplines the Paramount+ drama series Tulsa King.

Stallone returned to his Rocky franchise in 2015 with Ryan Coogler’s Creed reboot. He is repped by UTA.

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