While Donald Trump wanted Sylvester Stallone to take the job at the head of the National Endowment for the Arts, the actor famous for playing Rocky Balboa thinks that he has a better calling in life: namely, helping veterans find jobs.
According to BuzzFeed News, the Hollywood legend said Sunday that he would be declining the position with the NEA if it were offered by Trump, saying that he wished to focus on working to find gainful employment and housing for those coming home from the service.
“I am incredibly flattered to have been suggested to be involved with the National Endowment of the Arts,” Stallone said in a statement. “However, I believe I could be more effective by bringing national attention to returning military personnel in an effort to find gainful employment, suitable housing and financial assistance these heroes respectfully deserve.”
The New York Times reported that advisers for Trump had reached out to the 70-year-old regarding the job with the NEA. However, The Times reported that no formal offer had been made to Stallone regarding the job.
In an interview back in January, Stallone went on record praising the then-Republican candidate.
“I love Donald Trump,” he told Variety magazine. “He’s a great Dickensian character. You know what I mean? There are certain people like Arnold, Babe Ruth, that are bigger than life.”
The NEA, which has a budget of $150 million, is currently led by artist and musician Jane Chu, according to the New York Daily News.
In an interview with The Washington Post, the president-elect said that it was up to Congress to “make the determination as to what the spending priorities ought to be” when it came to arts. However, he did add that while education in basic subjects like math, reading and science are “the keys to economic success,” he did add that “a holistic education that includes literature and the arts is just as critical to creating good citizens.”
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