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Mickey Rourke Discovered Gareth Thomas After Losing Arm-Wrestling Match

Mickey Rourke Discovered Gareth Thomas After Losing Arm-Wrestling Match

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Mickey Rourke says he got the inspiration for his upcoming biopic on out athlete Gareth Thomas while arm-wrestling rugby players in a London pub, reports the Edge.

Rourke, who stars in the action epic The Immortals, which opens tomorrow, reveals that while drinking with members of the Huddersfield Giants rugby team, he got into an arm-wrestling match, which he lost. Rourke says he became good friends with the athletes.

"They gave me a magazine about their club ... [and] there was an article about Gareth Thomas, the rugby player who announced that he's gay," Rourke recalls. "I came back home and was watching Pardon the Interruption and they were talking about Gareth. They were saying how brave he was for coming out. I got on a plane and I met Gareth and I told him, 'I'm wanna make your life story.' He gave me the rights. I think I beat a studio that was also interested out there by about four days. We're gonna do this movie now. Thomas announced his retirement [October 25]. I've been writing the script for the past year. Hopefully we'll do it in March."

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