An Interview with Michael Rooker

Michael Rooker

Actor/Producer Michael Rooker, a talented force from Alabama has a number TV & Film credits to his name. With his most notable role in, “Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer” to his latest work in “Super” and “The Walking Dead”, Michael is a talent you want to keep your eye on. This year, Michael is making a number of appearances at conventions and radio interviews so there are many ways to catch him.

So, you just finished another convention at HORRORHOUND last year, how was it?

Michael Rooker: Very busy, lots of great people and I had a really fun time there.

How were the fans towards you?

Michael Rooker:  The fans were awesome, but I did notice you guys drink a lot at these shows, lol. Some are great hula hoopers and everyone looks different in swimsuits, ha-ha.

Not sure what you mean by that…

Michael Rooker: Well all day people are dressed in tough looking clothing but when they go to the pool they all look very honest and demure.

Ohh I see, so how do you compare SDCC to Horror conventions?

Michael Rooker: Comic Con was very huge and it felt very rushed.  The horror shows are much smaller and more personal.  Everything is more laid back and it’s easier to have conversations with the fans.

Are you more of a fan of comics or horror?

Michael Rooker: Both more or less but overall I prefer film.

So what is your favorite horror movie?

Michael Rooker:  Well, currently I am in a Zombie state of mind so I would have to say George Romero’s “Night of the Living Dead”.  I like the black and white and grittiness of the film.

You have played a lot of villain roles from ‘Henry” to “Slither” to Merle of  “The Walking Dead”.  How do you separate yourself from being such a bad guy once you are finished shooting?

Michael Rooker: I don’t think I do a lot of bad guys per say, but more of tough individuals such as a cop or someone on the street.  Every now and then I do play a bad guy, but it doesn’t effect me personally.

Do you like doing bad guy roles?

Michael Rooker: It doesn’t matter to me, bad or good I’ll do it all. (He smiles)

How was it working with Rainn Wilson in “Super”?

Michael Rooker:  Rainn is a sissy boy, lol, but he is an awesome dancer. We did the Tango together during the making of “Super”. If you see the movie, you will see what awesome dancers we are.  We could do “Dancing with the Stars”, we are THAT good, lol.  We would probably only last until the really good dancers came through. But Rainn and I would have definitely kicked some ass on that show.

What has been your most challenging role?

Michael Rooker: None, I haven’t had one, ha-ha.  But in reality every movie is challenging, some are more psychologically challenging and some are more physically challenging.  It all depends on the movie and the role itself.

How was it doing the voice of the “Call of Duty” game?

Michael Rooker: That actually was very hard work. Way harder than I had thought it was going to be. By the end of a 4-hour session, you are trashed.  I mean your vocal chords are shot. You’re doing a lot of screaming and yelling because it’s a video game. Overall, it was tough work but the end product is totally badass.

So how was directing your first movie “Penn Hurst”?

Michael Rooker: I learned I am not a fan of directing. You can’t go back to your trailer and have coffee when a scene is over. You have to keep going and deal with so much of the actors, producers etc. But I learned I would never ever not listen to any of my directors again. Now I understand what it’s like to deal with us pain-in-the-ass actors. I will be a good little actor from now on. I have been enlightened. Lol.

In your opinion, on ‘The Walking Dead” why do you believe Daryl and you decided to join forces with the group passing through instead of keeping to yourselves?

Michael Rooker: Mostly because there are some hot chicks in the groups, lol.  But really it’s out of necessity when you’re the only humans around.  You are going to band together because you’re stronger as a unit and even Merle and Daryl know that.

How did you feel about losing your hand as opposed to waiting for the possibility of someone coming back to rescue you?

Michael Rooker: The Zombies were coming and they were gonna get through that door.  When you’re in a delirious state of mind, all you’re thinking about is any possible way to get out of there before the Zombies get through.  Your mad with sunstroke, without food or water for two or three days, all that is going through your mind is that you are going to be eaten so you will chop off your hand if that’s your only option.  If you have to do it you just do it.

How was doing a cameo on Season 2 of “The Walking Dead” and teaming up with Daryl again?

Michael Rooker: The cameo was a lot of fun. And working with Norman was a good time as well.

Would you do another cameo?

Michael Rooker: Of course, it would be even more fun doing it again.

Have any new projects coming up?

Michael Rooker: I have “Hypothermal” coming out.  Hopefully the monster looks really good.  “Rogue River“, “Brother’s Keeper” and “Bolden” are all coming out this year as well.

Have any fans brought you or shown you anything interesting they have done with Merle?

Michael Rooker: There were some cool looking dolls that I have seen and received that are quite frightening, eerie and spooky.

Since you’re part owner of a shooting range, I have to ask… what is your favorite gun?

Michael Rooker: My favorite sidearm is 1911.  I have some revolvers that are old western style that are pretty awesome. The AR15 was a lot of fun to shoot. I have a Benelli N1, which is an ass kicker. I don’t have a lot of firearms, but what I do have I shoot with and have fun with.

What is your favorite or dream car?

Michael Rooker: My dream care is a Lamborghini.  I drove one once but it was too small for me.  I like a roomy car with a big engine like a hot rod Lincoln. In my younger days I owned a 64 Chevy.  I have enjoyed all kinds of cars. In Rosewood I drove a model-T and that was awesome!

Finally, what are your thoughts on the Rookerholics?

Michael Rooker: We just had our first meeting this weekend here for the Rookerholics. I gave away a target I shot at the range. The target went to Rookerholic Tayra who found Merle in NYC handcuffed to a fichus tree. It was great seeing the Rookerholics, hah.

If you want to become a Rookerholic (which is free) go to:

Michael Rooker’s “Official” website where you can find all news, videos and appearances:

Also, Follow Michael on Twitter: @Michael_Rooker

 And Face book:

Michael will be at Monster Mania this weekend March 9-11, so stop by and say Hi. He will be damn glad to meet ya!!

* Writers Opinion: After my interview with Mr. Rooker, I can honestly say he is truly a delightful, kind and humorous person.  He someone if you get the chance to meet him you should because he will keep you laughing and in good conversation for hours.

By Rachael Tedeschi

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