9:10 am EST, February 8, 2019

The real life model for Rocket Raccoon, Oreo, passes away

Oreo, the real raccoon who acts as the life model for Guardians of the Galaxy’s Rocket Raccoon has passed away.

Everyone loves Rocket Raccoon, the gun-toting, mischevious, foul-mouthed raccoon that rounds out the Guardians of the Galaxy. Voiced by Bradley Cooper, you can help but love the angry little guy, and for all of his tough talk, Rocket still has those cute features of a real raccoon.

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It turns out that cuteness comes from Rocket’s real-life raccoon model, Oreo. Unfortunately, Oreo passed away suddenly at the age of 10.

Quinta Layla, one of the people who cares for Oreo, posted on Facebook about the loss of the beloved raccoon. She said Oreo died after a brief illness, though she did not specify what specifically took Oreo’s life. Though many of us only knew Oreo for the life modeling he provided for Rocket Raccoon and his brief appearances on the red carpet with James Gunn, Layla painted a lovely picture of the type of animal Oreo was.

Rocket might be a bit rough around the edges, but it seems that Oreo was nothing but a sweet and lovable companion.

The character Rocket Raccoon was originally created by Bill Mantlo and Keith Giffen for Marvel Preview #7 in 1976. Understandably, the character fascinated many people, and has been a bizarre staple of comic and pop culture. It makes sense, too, as Rocket was inspired by a piece of pop culture–a Beatles song called “Rocky Raccoon.”

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Rocket has become an iconic character in the MCU since he first showed up on the big screen. James Gunn’s brother, Sean, provides the motion capture for the raccoon on set while Oreo would provide the real raccoon movements and reactions to make Rocket the character we know and love from the films. We’re sad to see Oreo go, but we’re happy he lived such a long, full life full of love.

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