It's been a little less than a week and a lot people still are surprised that Mickey Rourke lost on Sunday. I never bought the Rourke hype. I found him to be a serious threat, but I always remained confident that Sean Penn's name would be said on Sunday night. Why? Here's some reasons why Rourke possibly cost himself the little gold man.
Please take note, next year's Oscar nominees.
1. Burning Bridges
Hollywood can be ruthless. Trust me. I have first hand experience. It can also be very unforgiving. Again, trust me. Millions of dollars are on the line and if you fuck up, you'll pay.
Mickey Rourke fucked up for a long time. He made bad decisions. The Academy and SAG (both awards that Penn won) being filled with people in Hollywood were probably much less forgiving than the Hollywood Foreign Press or British Academy (both not part of the Hollywood film industry). People failed to overlook this before the Oscars.
2. Acceptance Speeches
Some people don't realize this, but acceptance speeches at the Globes, SAG, and BAFTAs actually matter. Especially, the Globes and SAG, which is before the majority of Academy members vote. These early acceptance speeches are test runs for the Oscars.
People like to be inspired when you take the stage. They don't want to be bored. They want you to be articulate and gracious. Most importantly, they want you to be have class.
While Rourke was both inspiring and gracious on the stage for his wins at the Globes and BAFTA, his speeches were a little too edgy for their own good. Especially his inarticulate use of the "f bomb". Also, talking about Marisa Tomei's looks in a sexual way and Darren Aronofsky's balls is also not a good idea. It's funny, but it all comes off classless. Sadly for Mickey, the Academy cares more about class.
Look at this above picture. I've worn some crazy outfits in the past, but how can you not wear a tux? Rourke didn't make any attempt to hide his bad boy image. The Academy doesn't want to admit it to themselves, but it's conservative. If they tell me they're liberal, then I would laugh in their face. This may change in 20 years, but right now it's conservative.
With that said, if someone is wearing chains and is showing a silver tooth, I don't think that's the best idea. I thought Mickey had a publicist? Couldn't she convince him to at least try to look a little better. I'm not even suggesting cutting his hair, but he could at least put on a nice suit for a couple months.
I'm a wrestling fan, but why would Rourke start an angle with the WWE on the red carpet? He said he was going to kick Chris Jericho's ass at the SAG awards. Why would he then make an appearance on Larry King Live to start a feud with Chis Jericho? Why would he want the WWE to talk about his role every week to promote the film. All this is fine unless you're a serious threat to win an Oscar!
Rourke should have not done anything with the WWE until after the Oscars. Instead, he had his possible involvement at WrestleMania XXV all over the news. Then, he awkwardly backed out of a match (for now) in an attempt to save face.
This was just a bad decision and again I blame Rourke's team. Unless Mickey went against his agent and publicist's advice, I don't get why he would have done this. It was a complete bonehead move.
Mickey isn't the first person to possibly cost himself an Oscar. Remember Russell Crowe in 2001 for A Beauitful Mind? He had that race wrapped up before he snapped after the BAFTAs. His performance was much better than Denzel's. Or how can we forget about Eddie Murphy in 2006 for Dreamgirls. He won practically everything leading up to the Oscars. Then, for some reason he had Norbit released right in time for when the Academy members received their ballots. This even created a term called the "Norbit Effect".
Let me finish by writing that these four reasons don't cost you the Oscar. I just believe they are important factors that COULD attribute to someone's loss. The Academy Awards is about prestige and respect. It's an elite club and Rourke didn't fit that mold at the end of the day. Then again, I personally think Sean Penn was better anyway, so who knows if any of this mattered anyway.