A Bar, a Bull and a Movie

By | June 7, 2018

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Actor John Travolta and Debra Winger smile on set of the Paramount Pictures movie 'Urban Cowboy' circa 1980. (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Movies and sometimes songs can start a craze that sweeps the nation and last for years. This is no different from June 6, 1980 when the mechanical bull riding was brought into the spotlight. The movie Urban Cowboy starring John Travolta and Debra Winger featuring a mechanical bull brought in $53.3 million from theaters nationwide.

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The storyline, in case you don’t remember, is about a country boy with big city dreams, Bud Davis who is played by John Travolta, and moves to Pasadena, Texas. When a mechanical bull-riding contest is announced at a local bar called Gilley’s, Bud decides to sign up. Gilley’s is an actual bar named after the co-owner and country singer, Mickey Gilley.

Spoiler alert if you’re one in a million that has not seen the movie yet. As the movie goes, Bud was able to hang on for the full time, eight seconds, and leave with the winnings, a whopping $5,000 prize. Needless to say, his manliness also captured the heart of Sissy, played by Debra Winger.