This story just gets weird and weirder as we go along. Last year it was reported that Mickey Rourke was interested in bringing the story of the first openly gay rugby player to the big screen after he was spotted dining with the British player in question, Gareth Thomas. At the time many believed Rourke would produce or co-star as Thomas' father since the actor is some 20 years older than the athlete, who still competes. Not so fast, says Thomas' agent Emanuele Palladino, who's confirmed reports that Rourke not only wants to make this film and that he wants to star as Gareth Thomas, but also that he plans to actually remove his two front teeth in order to make the whole thing more realistic since Thomas is also missing his two front teeth.
Palladino says, "Mickey wants to film everything in Wales, although it is early days. He really wants to throw himself into Welsh and rugby and really learn as quickly as he can. He'll learn Welsh I think, obviously where it is relevant as well. He is going to get rid of his two front teeth and stuff - he will be taking them out. Mickey intends to get as close to the character as he can, as he thinks it is a great story."
Oh, we don't doubt that it's a great story. Here you have the first openly gay player of one of the world's toughest, most manly-man sports, and that sort of angle should instantly attract film producers and big studios. Great, wonderful -- but is Mickey Rourke fooling himself here?
Sure, an over-the-hill wrestler is easy to buy, but a rugby player who's 20 years younger than him and still active? Is the guy serious? Plus, how many bottles of wine did he drink before agreeing to actually remove his two front teeth in order to play the role? Hey, we're the first to give older actors credit when they want to take on an ambitious role that's out of their comfort zone, but this whole thing seems all kind of wrong. Now, throw Tom Hardy's name into the pile, and then we may have something to talk about.
What do you think? Can Rourke pull this off, or is this just a lot of talk and not much else?