EXCLUSIVE: John Travolta Looks Back on 'Urban Cowboy' 35 Years Later

by Sophie Schillaci 11:54 AM PDT, June 08, 2015
Playing EXCLUSIVE: John Travolta Looks Back on 'Urban Cowboy' 35 Years Later

John Travolta is reminiscing about his days as an Urban Cowboy 35 years ago.

The actor appears in a new CMT documentary, Urban Cowboy: The Rise and Fall of Gilley's, which tells the story of the real-life Houston honky-tonk where Travolta's Bud learned about life and love in 1980.

While we can't imagine another star stepping into Bud's cowboy boots, Travolta admits that his casting may have raised a few eyebrows back in the day.

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"I felt like I had established, between Boy in the Plastic Bubble and Carrie and Saturday Night Fever, that I was indeed an actor. That was my job," Travolta says in ET's exclusive clip of the doc. "If probably there were any skeptic, it might have been maybe the local person. 'Can the city guy do this or not?'"

Travolta's co-star Scott Glenn also looks back on his role in the film, and what it meant to him at that point in his career.

"I kind of walked away from having a career in the movies. I was like, really f---ing arrogant," he admits. "I was kicked out of Universal for getting in a fight with a director who, I told him he couldn't direct traffic. If I had to audition, I said, 'You know, f--- that.'

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"I was living in Idaho. I got a call, and it was the director, Jim Bridges," Glenn recalls. "He said, 'Will you come down to Houston? You're really perfect for the bad guy in this movie and if you do this film, you'll never have to audition again as long as you live. You can live in Idaho and you'll have a great life as an actor.'"

Urban Cowboy: The Rise and Fall of Gilley's premieres on CMT on June 13 at 9pm ET/PT. In the meantime, keep checking ETonline for exclusive backstage access to today's country stars at the CMT Music Awards on Wednesday, June 10.