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Was Sylvester Stallone the source of that bizarre urban myth involving Richard Gere and a gerbil placed strategically up his…

Anyway. According to Sly, Gere thinks he did start the hilarious, yet also disturbing “felching” tale that dogs Richard to this day.

As Stallone tells it, the bad blood between the two all started when he and Gere had a falling-out on the set of the 1974 flick The Lords of Flatbush.

Sylvester Stallone Image
(Getty Images for Disney)

Stallone said that Gere was supposed to have the role played by Perry King, but he and Gere “never hit it off” and the man known best as Rocky Balboa got so mad at Gere that he once elbowed him in the head… over some chicken.

“[Gere] would strut around in his oversized motorcycle jacket like he was the baddest knight at the round table,” Stallone said.

He also says that one time during a fight scene, things got a little too real. At another point, things got physical during a lunch when Stallone went into a Toyota to eat lunch.

“I was eating a hot dog and he climbs in with a half a chicken covered in mustard with grease nearly dripping out of the aluminum wrapper,” Stallone recounted.

“I said, ‘That thing is going to drip all over the place.’ He said, ‘Don’t worry about it.’ I said, ‘If it gets on my pants you’re gonna know about it.’ He proceeds to bite into the chicken and a small, greasy river of mustard lands on my thigh. I elbowed him in the side of the head and basically pushed him out of the car. The director had to make a choice: one of us had to go, one of us had to stay.”

THG NOTE: Whatever started the feud between Nicole Richie and Paris Hilton is unknown, but we guarantee it wasn’t as funny as this – and did not involve food (obviously).

Richard Gere‘s spokesman wasn’t available for comment, possibly due to being preoccupied with small rodents (zing!) but according to Stallone:

“Richard was given his walking papers, and to this day, seriously dislikes me. He even thinks I’m the individual responsible for the gerbil rumor. Not true, but that’s the rumor.”

If nothing else, we’d like to thank Sly for putting the Gere story back in the news. We haven’t heard that rumor in about 10 years… and it’s certainly just as funny (if not even more disturbing) as the Dustin Diamond sex tape.