Michael Rooker Channels Rowdy Burns in Days of Thunder Throwback Photograph

Michael Rooker is channeling Rowdy Burns after finding and putting on his old jacket from Days of Thunder. Over the course of his career, Rooker has performed a variety of memorable roles, perhaps most often as an antagonist. The Winston Cup Champion and a rival to Cole Trickle (Tom Cruise), Rowdy stands out as one of Rooker’s best roles, and it’s fun to see Rooker momentarily stepping back into character by donning the fictional NASCAR star’s jacket.

In the caption, Michael Rooker writes, “NASCAR forever…..was going through some of my old jackets and look what I found………wow!!!”

Directed by Tony Scott and written by Robert Towne, Days of Thunder was released in theaters in 1990. It stars Tom Cruise as Cole Trickle, a young racer recruited to compete in the NASCAR Winston Cup Series. As he gets acclimated to the NASCAR style of racing, Cole competes with Rowdy Burns (Rooker), a cocky championship racer whose skills on the track are intimidating to Cole. After both drivers are seriously injured in a crash, Cole and Rowdy wind up patching things up to become close friends.

Days of Thunder was a big hit at the box office when it was released and has developed a fairly large cult following. At the time, some critics slammed the movie for its over-the-top nature, but for fans of the cult classic, that’s one of the aspects that makes it work. Additionally, iconic filmmaker Quentin Tarantino has credited Days of Thunder as his favorite big budget racing movie.

“Yeah, yeah, you laugh but seriously I’m a big fan,” Tarantino once said of the movie. “To me Days of Thunder is the movie Grand Prix and Le Mans should have been. Sure, it had a big budget, big stars and a big director in Tony Scott, but it had the fun of those early AIP movies. I just don’t think it works if you take the whole thing too seriously.”

It might be because he’s been spending a lot of time at home lately, but Rooker has also apparently been going through some of his old props. In another recent post, he shows off the two Colt pistols he carried as Sherman McMasters in the 1993 Western movie Tombstone. In the caption, Rooker also notes that he’s just now getting a rig to keep the faux weapons holstered after keeping the Colts around the house for nearly three decades.

We’ve seen a lot of incredible things from Rooker since he first broke onto the scene with his stellar performance as the titular murderer in 1986’s Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer. He has had dozens of memorable roles on both the big and small screens, from Mallrats, JFK, and the Guardians of the Galaxy series to True Detective, Burn Notice, and The Walking Dead. He can next be seen in the upcoming Fast & Furious sequel F9 and the James Gunn comic book movie The Suicide Squad, and he’ll be reprising the role of Yondu in the animated Marvel series What If…?.

This news comes to us from Michael Rooker on Facebook.

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