Mickey Rourke on Tom Cruise: ‘He’s been doing the same part for 35 years. I got no respect for that’

When asked about the success of ‘Top Gun:Maverick,’ the actor called the Hollywood star ‘irrelevant.’ But he himself is rarely seen onscreen today

Mickey Rourke
Actor Mickey Rourke in California.Paul Archuleta (Getty Images)

Actor Mickey Rourke doesn’t just go on the attack in the movies. Two years ago, he called fellow actor Robert De Niro a “crybaby” and “a punk ass” in an Instagram post. Now he has spoken out against Tom Cruise, whose latest film Top Gun: Maverick has become the biggest blockbuster in recent years, earning more than $1 billion at the box office. But that’s not important to Rourke.

When asked about the movie’s success in an interview with the British program Piers Morgan Uncensored, the former boxer called Cruise “irrelevant.” “That doesn’t mean shit to me. The guy’s been doing the same effing part for 35 years, you know? I mean, I got no respect for that.”

He continued: “I don’t care about money and power. I care about when I watch Al Pacino work and Chris Walken and De Niro’s early work and Richard Harris’s work and Ray Winstone’s work – that’s the kind of actor I want to be like.”

Rourke has a reputation for being difficult, on set and off. He rose to fame thanks to films such as 9½ Weeks, Angel Heart and Rumble Fish. The Los Angeles Times described him as a “young Hollywood lion, an actor with the brooding intensity of the early Marlon Brando, the electricity of James Dean and the emotional charge of John Garfield.”

But his poor behavior on set and feuds with Hollywood heavyweights such as actress Kim Basinger and director Oliver Stone dampened his career.

He turned down roles in hit movies such as Rain Man, The Untouchables, Platoon and Pulp Fiction and, slowly, his seemingly unstoppable career came to a halt.

In 2008, Rourke made a brief comeback thanks to Darren Aronofsky’s The Wrestler, which earned him an Oscar nomination for Best Actor. But little has been seen of him since then. Rourke starred in Iron Man 2, but many of his scenes were cut after he got into an argument with Marvel, which didn’t allow him to change his lines. Not long ago, director Martin Scorsese wanted to cast him in The Irishman, but according to Rourke, he lost the role due to his feud with De Niro.

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