A raccoon named Oreo who was used by director James Gunn as inspiration for the character of Rocket in the original Guardians of the Galaxy film has died. Oreo’s death was announced by a post on the Facebook page of Quinta Layla, a farm in Portugal where the raccoon lived. During the Guardians shoot, Gunn posted a photo of himself with Oreo along with the caption, “I’ve just hired a new gaffer… Chewing on wires is good, right?”
In fact, Oreo was used as a visual reference for the CG character of Rocket, who is voiced by Bradley Cooper. Gunn would later attend the London premiere of Guardians with the raccoon on his shoulder.
“We have only the saddest news today,” begins the Quinto Layla post. “Our hearts are broken as we have lost our best friend, our Guardian of our Galaxy Mr Oreo Raccoon. Oreo passed away in the early hours of this morning after a very short illness. Many thanks to our wonderful vets for their compassion and care.”