When Chuck Norris signed on 2012's The Expendables 2, it was rumored that he would do it -- on the condition that the film would have a 'PG-13' rating instead of 'R', though most of Norris' films were 'R'-rated due to his 1980s heyday as the John Wayne of martial arts.
Well, Chuck Norris was in The Expendables 2 -- and the film was rated 'R', yet it debuted at number-one at the U.S. box office when released in August 2012 and went on to grossed over $300 million dollars worldwide.
Now comes two years later with The Expendables 3 -- minus Chuck --, and it has stated that the film has been rated 'PG-13' for 'violence, including intense, sustained gun battles and fight scenes, and for language', according to Collider.
In recent years, there have been mixed results of popular 'R'-rated franchises being toned down for PG-13 in hopes of attracting a wider audience. For instance, 1993's Robocop 3 with Robert John Burke replacing Peter Weller as the half-human, half-cyborg crime-fighter was a critical and commercial disappointment.
However, 2007's Live Free or Die Hard became the highest-grossing installment in the Die Hard franchise with Bruce Willis as wisecracking NYPD cop John McClane, the guy who's always at the wrong place at the wrong time but still that guy who always done the right thing.
Willis was in the first two Expendables as 'Mr. Church', the mysterious covert operator who hired Barney Ross and his team -- just as long as the job's real and the money's real. Sadly, he's replaced by Harrison Ford for The Expendables 3 due to Willis wanting more money, which led to Sly Stallone tweeting him as 'greedy' and 'lazy'.
The Expendables 3 could be the 'last ride' for Barney and his A-Team of mercenaries, as they need fresh blood in order to take on vengeful arms dealer Conrad Stonebanks (Mel Gibson), who co-founded the Expendables with Barney, with whom he has a score to settle.
The Expendables 3 locks and load into theaters August 15.