So, wrestling fans, how many of you have seen the Mickey Rourke movie "The Wrestler"? I admit that my current plans do not include a sojourn to my local cinema to partake this celluloid presentation. I just don't really feel like shelling out my cash for this apparently critically-acclaimed look at the seedier side of the Indy wrestling scene. I've had enough of that in real life.
I'm sure Mr. Rourke gave an absolutely stellar performance, but if I want to investigate the personal side of a pro wrestler in the down-side of his career or his life, I'll pick up one of the many and various biographies out on the market.
I have Penny Banner's "Banner Days", and I do want to read Bret Hart's bio, even though I probably know enough of my fellow Calgarian to pen an unauthorized verion on my own.
Don't get me wrong: I do intend to see the movie—the very hour it comes out on DVD. I expect, based on everything I have heard, that the movie and the acting will wind up entertaining me. I do expect to see Mickey Rourke on my screen long before the DVD is released though.
At the SAG (Screen Actors' Guild) Awards just over a week ago, while being interviewed on the red carpet, Rourke stated that he was going to WrestleMania and that Jericho had better watch out. This of course set up the next night's Raw, with Y2J in the ring cutting his promo on Rourke, which of course meant we could expect a match between these two at WWE's Superbowl of pay per views.
Just a few days later however, this plan apparently kiboshed by Rourke himself. He even appeared on Larry King Live along with Jericho, via satellite, to put the breaks on this idea. Something however during the interview hit me: Chris Jericho was on the program not as Chris "Jericho" Irvine as he has been in the past, but as "Chris Jericho", the WWE performer and bad guy wrestler. Showing up on Larry King in character has caused me to smell a rat.
It has been fairly widely accepted by the mainstream that Mickey Rourke took three giant steps forward in both his personal and his professional life with the movie. He has been told since his SAG interview not only by his agent but by a myriad of others in "Hollyweird" that if he were to show up at WrestleMania, get into the ring and wrestle an actual wrestler, he would wind up taking two steps back.
Additionally, since his performance has generated such a serious buzz within the Academy of Motion Pictures, he is now genuinely considered a legitimate contender for an Oscar for Best Actor. As a result, his handler and the studio wants nothing to get in the way of his chances.
To play it safe, it has been decided that he not follow through on what is considered to be a very bad move for his career. However, the Oscars are on February 22. WrestleMania is not until April. Don't be to surprised to see him actually show up at the event, as earlier promised. Rourke may be in line for the Best Actor nomination, but his fairly recent past is already working against him. The odds are great he won't win the little golden statue.
Should he lose out on Oscar, I don't see him losing out on his chance to put what he learned to one "real" test.