Rourke won the leading actor prize at the British Orange Academy Film Awards ceremony in London Sunday night for his portrayal of an aging pro wrestling icon desperate to recapture his glory days in the big-screen drama, "The Wrestler."
"It's a pretty statue," Rourke said upon collecting his BAFTA mask, which he dedicated to his late friend, actor Richard Harris. "Thank you to BAFTA, to Optimum Pictures, to Fox Searchlight, to (director) Darren Aronofsky, who gave me a second chance after I (expletive) up my career for 15 years... I want to thank my agent, who put his career in jeopardy by representing me several years ago, David Unger... I want to thank my publicist, Paula Woods, for having the hardest job in show business -- telling me where to go, what to do, when to do it, what to eat, what to dress, what to (expletive...) Oh God, it's such a pleasure to be here and be back out of the darkness."
Rourke also described his co-star Marisa Tomei as "a hell of a talent," thanked her for putting up with him and called her brave for "taking her clothes off all the time" in the movie.
"I enjoyed looking at her," he said.
BAFTA host Jonathan Ross, who recently returned to the BBC airwaves after a 90-day suspension for leaving sexually explicit voicemail messages for someone as part of a radio prank, quipped: "The great Mickey Rourke. And I'm afraid after that speech, he's now suspended for three months."