Mickey Rourke has been tasked with playing several villainous characters in his recent films, but the Hollywood veteran said he likes to make the bad guy multi-dimensional.
"I look to show the other sides of a character, you know, the nice side or having a pet or something - not just angry and killing all the time, Show the different layers really," Rourke told OnTheRedCarpet.com host Chris Balish on Monday, November 7, at the Los Angeles premiere of "Immortals." "[Director] Tarsem [Singh] let me do it a little bit."
The Greek Mythology-themed film "Immortals" depicts the fight of hero and mortal Theseus, played by Henry Cavill, against Rourke's character, the evil King Hyperion, who strives to obtain a weapon that can destroy humanity. The movie also stars Freida Pinto, Stephen Dorff and "Twilight" star Kellan Lutz.
In a recent interview to promote "Immortals," Rourke reportedly criticized the makers of "Iron Man 2," which saw him play villain Ivan Vanko, aka Whiplash.
"I try to find the moments where [the villain is] not that clichéd, evil bad guy and it's a big fight," ComingSoon.net and Screen Rant quoted him as saying. "I had it on 'Iron Man' and they won. It was going to work for Marvel and them breaking (director Jon) Favreau's (expletive) and wanting just a one-dimensional villain. The performance and all the things that I tried to bring to it end up on the (expletive) floor."
"That can cause you not to care as much," he said. "To not to want to put that effort in to try and make it an intelligent bad guy or a bad guy who is justified in what his reasons are."
"It was quite messy, all that cement. But I was confused, because I thought they only put dead people in there. 'Cause any time that I went by there when I was younger, going to acting school and all, I would go by and look at the names and nobody was standing in the shoes, you know? I was a little weary, I said, 'Whoa, whoa, whoa, I'm not dead yet!'"
Rourke, a native of Schenectady, New York, began his on-screen career in the late 1970s, appearing in films such as "1941" and later, the 1982 coming-of-age movie "Diner," which is being made into a musical. Rourke later starred in movies such as "Year of the Dragon" in 1985 and Angel Heart" in 1987.
In the early 1990s, he worked as a professional boxer. He also continued to act, playing mostly supporting roles, and won praise for his part in the 2005 film "Sin City."
In 2008, life imitated fiction when he made a major comeback with the film "The Wrestler," which saw him playing an aging professional wrestler trying to revive his career. Rourke was nominated for an Oscar for his leading role. He later went on to star in "Iron Man 2" and the 2010 action film "The Expendables."
Rourke is currently filming another film with his "Immortals" co-star Kellan Lutz entitled "Java Heat." The film follows an American in Indonesia who joins forces with a police officer to track down a terrorist.
Rourke was also excited to reveal another project he is working on, which he called, "The Beautiful Game."
"That tall guy over there, that's the legendary Rugby player Gareth Thomas," Rourke told reporters at the "Immortals" premiere, ushering Thomas over. "I'm going to do his story next, a movie called 'The Beautiful Game' about the guy who came out while he was still playing and said 'I'm gay.' It was a very courageous thing that he did and I can't wait to sink my teeth into that."
"Immortals" opened in theaters on November 11, watch a trailer below.
Reporting by Chris Balish, co-host of KABC Television's entertainment show "On The Red Carpet" (check for local TV listings).