Mickey Rourke to play gay rugby star
December 28th, 2010
12:05 PM ET

Mickey Rourke to play gay rugby star

After tackling the title role in "The Wrestler," Mickey Rourke is now ready to tell the story Gareth Thomas, a tough-as-nails Welsh rugby star who also happens to be gay.

Rourke confirmed his upcoming role on the British talk show "Alan Carr's Chatty Man" – but not before setting the host straight. Asked if he was going to play a gay rugby star, Rourke warned Carr not to use labels. "You’re not supposed to say that, okay?" the 58-year-old actor scolded. "When I met the rugby player, Gareth Thomas, this is one thing that he and I talked about. This is something that’s really important: We’re doing a movie about a man who plays rugby who is gay."

Six-foot-three Thomas, 36, married his teenage sweetheart in 2002, but four years later, decided he could no longer live a lie and told her he is homosexual. Shortly afterward, he told his coach and his closest teammates. "I was absolutely terrified, wondering what they were going to say," Thomas has said. "But they came in, patted me on the back and said, 'We don't care. Why didn't you tell us before?'"

In December 2009, Thomas went public about his sexuality, and Rourke commends him for his bravery both on and off the field.

"To be a man who plays rugby who is gay and to live with that secret for the amount of years that Gareth had, to perform at the high level that he performed at, it takes a lot of courage," he told Carr.

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Filed under: Celebrities • movies

soundoff (11 Responses)
  1. Evel Kneivel

    Only a sport that's primarily popular with the English mama's boys would tolerate a phag. You don't see American football players admitting to this stuff.

    December 28, 2010 at 10:51 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Joe

    Damn you Americans are ignorant! Go watch rugby! Do yourselves a favour!

    December 28, 2010 at 7:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • bitnar

      LOL! My first exposure to rugby was the comic strip Andy Capp.

      December 28, 2010 at 8:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • USA!

      @Joe... How does that make us ignorant? Just because we watch our own sports and not that rubbish you call a sport? I'm sure I know more about American Baseball and Football than you, but I wouldn't judge an entire country based on my knowledge. Go brush your teeth! 🙂

      December 28, 2010 at 11:54 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Average suburban man

    I thought Rourke was gay anyway?

    December 28, 2010 at 2:05 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Angelina

    My husband, Brad, says that Rugby is more commonly known as "Scrum".

    December 28, 2010 at 1:29 pm | Report abuse |
  5. cheefsfury


    December 28, 2010 at 12:30 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Be Quiet

    I'm all for this and think it's great...and I also think Mickey Rourke is one of the best actors in the world...but, how is a 58 year old going to play a 36 year old?

    December 28, 2010 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ozzi

      Lord knows I love Mickey Rourke but you're right: Rourke is nearly 60 and it would take a miracle to turn back the clock on his face.

      December 28, 2010 at 1:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • bitnar

      Have you seen photos of Gareth? Especially that one where his front teeth are missing? Rough sport. I think Mickey can handle it.

      December 28, 2010 at 7:48 pm | Report abuse |

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