Why the Rock Is the First Pro Wrestler (or Athlete) to Become a Movie Star - Simply SAMAD

Simply SAMAD

A blog dedicated to short stories from Nigeria and exciting tales all over the world


Home Top Ad

Responsive Ads Here

Wednesday, May 01, 2013

Why the Rock Is the First Pro Wrestler (or Athlete) to Become a Movie Star

Ask a group of pro wrestling fans to name their favorite lord of the ring and you might get 10 different answers.

Older fans grew up idolizing Hulk Hogan, Andre the Giant and "Nature Boy" Ric Flair while newer fans might list Shawn Michaels, Stone Cold Steve Austin and John Cena.

Yet ask those same people to pick their favorite wrestler-turned-movie star and the decision gets a whole lot easier.

There's only one choice.

Dwayne Johnson, better known as The Rock, has starred in three movies over the past three months, "Snitch," "G.I Joe: Retaliation" and "Pain & Gain," and each film took the top spot at the box office its opening weekend.
His next movie, "Fast & Furious 6," will have to face down "The Hangover Part III" and "Epic" to keep that streak alive, but no one questions whether it will be a hit. Every film in the franchise has been, and early projections suggest the only question is whether it will hit $500 million, $750 million or $1 billion worldwide.

Johnson is currently in the midst of a streak unheard of not only in the history of former wrestlers but also other athletes who tried to cross over into the film business. Hogan, Cena, Shaq and even O.J. Simpson made a few movies, but none of them became a bona fide movie star.

"Everyone sitting in my chair is trying to work with Dwayne," Jeff Kirschenbaum, co-president of production at Universal, which has released five movies starring Johnson, told TheWrap. "I don't think he's having a moment. This isn't his 15 seconds of fame. He now has enough experience and craftsmanship that it's going to be a long run."

While this isn't the first time Johnson has been atop the box office, this is his first uninterrupted string of hits. His early films ranged from financially successful ("The Scorpion King," "The Game Plan," "The Tooth Fairy") to disappointing ("Doom," "The Rundown").

"I don't know that no one took him seriously because of wrestling, but he's the only person who has ever truly emerged out of that," an individual close to Johnson, who declined to be identified, told TheWrap.

So how did this happen? How did a former football player and member of the inimitable Rock 'n' Sock Connection become one of the most successful actors working today?

It starts with protein.

"He wakes up at 4 a.m. just so he can eat protein," Kirschenbaum, skinny as the Rock is broad, said. "He goes back to bed for an hour and at 5 a.m. he works out – when most people aren't even awake. He woke up an hour early just so the protein is already there to build muscle."

Johnson's morning routine has become a Hollywood legend, alongside Sean Penn's partying and Amanda Bynes' drunk driving.

Ask anyone who's worked with Johnson why he has succeeded where others have failed and they jump to tell a story about those pre-dawn workouts. It's what Ric Roman Waugh, who directed Johnson in "Snitch," dubbed the actor's "sweat equity."

"A lot of people can say 'we worked hard and can stay up late'," Waugh said. "But if they could only understand the amount of stuff he's putting into one day, it's astounding. The sky could be falling in his world, but in that moment you need him to focus, he's 100 percent with you."

That workload has only increased over the past two years. Since resurrecting his wrestling career in 2012, Johnson has expanded his film and TV work. Not only is he starring in several movies this year, but he just produced his first film, "Snitch," and is about to host a competition show on TNT, "The Hero."

When he first decided to try his hand at acting, Johnson retired from the WWE at the height of his popularity.  Yet his specific wrestling personality explains why Johnson found his way in Hollywood where the likes of Hogan and Cena did not.

Like most any other wrestler, he can use his hands or a two-by-four to destroy someone. He demonstrated as much in early films like "The Scorpion King," where he played a mercenary, and "Walking Tall," where he played a veteran eager to rid his town of corruption.

Kirschenbaum described those early performances as "raw," and those early characters as two-dimensional. That is where the career path of most former pro wrestlers both started and stopped.

"Most wrestlers have been straight-forward characters or amped up versions of the real individual," Adi Shankar, producer of "The Grey" and an avid wrestling fan, told TheWrap. "Hulk Hogan acted in a bunch of B-movies playing Hulk Hogan."

Instead, Johnson and his representatives experimented from the get-go, taking roles most wrestlers would not want to touch.

He played the straight man next to Sean William Scott in "The Rundown," which also called for him to get dry humped by a gaggle of baboons.

He then played a gay bodyguard in "Be Cool," and later entered the family area with "Tooth Fairy" and "Journey 2." All of his hits in 2013 feature action scenes, but "Snitch" is an adult drama and "Pain & Gain" is as quirky as a Michael Bay movie comes.

"Most action stars out there would never ever break their brand," Waugh, a former stunt man, said. "They would read a script and see a scene where they get beat down and say the guy has to punch me at least 10 times and hit me with a bat 14 times. Dwayne is completely fearless."

Unlike most of his peers, Johnson's popularity in wrestling was never predicated on physical prowess or intimidation.

"Stone Cold would get over because he'd beat everyone up. Shawn Michaels was one of the greatest wrestlers of all time. Mick Foley would just do crazy stuff," Shankar said. "The Rock got over because he was funny. You take humor out of the Rock and you don't have anything."

Shankar can remember when he first fell in love with The Rock. The Undertaker, one of the largest, most intimidating wrestlers in the WWE, had just battered and bruised the former football player. At the next event, The Rock came out and challenged him.

"He said 'Undertaker, you think you impress The Rock with your Mickey Mouse tattoos?' He acted like the Undertaker's goal in life was to come out and impress The Rock," Shankar recalled. "He wasn't a heavyweight champion at this point – just a guy coming up. The Undertaker had been around for a decade."

He was a showman first and a wrestler second.

"No matter how bad the show was, The Rock could cut a promo and save it," Shankhar said. "He could get on the mic and speak for three minutes and save a bad show."

Some claim the same now applies to poorly received films, with some dubbing Johnson franchise Viagra. Did your last sequel fail? Hire Johnson.

Some, like Waugh, love this term. Yet many chafe against the idea that Johnson saved their movies, believing it disrespectful to the previous success of the franchises he joined.

Whether Viagra or a supporting hand, there is one thing all directors and studio executives can agree on.

"My biggest concern on my next movie is that he's not in it,"Waugh said.

Culled from YAHOO MOVIES

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter @simplysamad for more exciting gist, photos, interviews, reviews, jokes, quotes and other entertaining content | BB pin: 267F2633


  1. Hello, i think that i saw you visited my blog so i came to
    “return the favor”.I'm attempting to find things to enhance my site!I suppose its ok to use some of your ideas!!

    my blog :: pozycjonowanie

  2. Holistic health music with all of its sacred healing energize soothes the mind,
    body, heart or lifts the way. The most typical length
    of a celebration is 4 periods.

    Here is my blog post; gsa search engine ranker

  3. Being a we have particular tips on so how to teach these products manners.

    Acquiring knowledge the basics would likely help your infant experience success later on on on.

    Here is my page; szamba Betonowe

  4. Unfortunately it can take with your most used set of shutters too.
    Store garden merchandise on hooks faraway from direct sunlight along with the elements.

    Feel free to surf to my web page: imprezy integracyjne

  5. These bungalows offering a home good feeling which makes sorts stay extremely enjoyable.

    my web page: agencje ochrony

  6. Your own 16-week training program begins August secondly.
    PTN provides you with net prospecting and managing contacts system as extremely well.

    Have a look at my webpage: adwokat warszawa

  7. Placing a solar panel is now not an not difficult thing,
    after each. Seriously when your beforehand electric source fails, you still have a very back-up.

    Also visit my webpage :: organizacja wczasów

  8. Since we have taking a behind us however some good facts.

    Canyon Ranch, Miami Key provides spectacular river views and health and happiness spa.

    Feel free to visit my blog - tłumaczenia niemiecki Katowice

  9. A very Tahiti vacation is often a vacation in The islands.
    Tenting is one of the most inexpensive way to relish a Spain special occasion.

    Feel free to surf to my webpage :: agencja detektywistyczna

  10. Beer is and in particular attractive to slugs; they will tempted to it plus trapped.
    Newspapers also decompose fairly quickly, and mix with the garden soil.

    Feel free to visit my website agencja detektywistyczna warszawa

  11. Are usually several benefits along with the service created by the software.

    Also visit my webpage ... biuro detektywistyczne

  12. Tahiti is the largest of specific 118 islands define
    French Polynesia. Rates get started off
    at $555.00 for every night.

    my homepage; usługi detektywistyczne warszawa

  13. The actual positioning of often the cesspool is practical during
    maintenance but also repairs. At those same
    time, that clean-up can also be irksome.

    My web blog ... usługi detektywistyczne warszawa

  14. So, a particular area without vegitative aside from low herbage may hold the latest cesspool.
    underneath. What try you love....doing everything that activities?

    Here is my webpage :: pobierowo

  15. Template: The template definitely is a base
    within where the driver selects the touch. Genuinely windbreakers and pit crew shirts may be desirable.

    My site; zespół muzyczny Poznań

  16. Essential bungalow houses are already quite small for a
    single storey in height.

    Feel free to visit my web blog :: tanie wczasy

  17. They are the compromise, though, on staying in a slow hotel.

    Finishing materials in order to clean and very soft
    with possible distinctive or boldly bracelets has a accents.

    My weblog - ochrona przeciwpożarowa

  18. Meant for instance, exposed buy-ins may
    be seen. However, you can find indications that may
    point to pay day loan location in the cesspool.

    My site - borelioza

  19. Only regular routine of septic aquariums keeps such leaking from happening.
    Slight amounts accumulate > and stress your main body.

    Feel free to surf to my web-site borelioza

  20. It is in the correct way a socially-driven persistence. However, there are
    times when taking every rest isn't a powerful option.

    Feel free to surf to my web-site ... historia piwa

  21. Law of Interest is working relating to you - it doesn't matter if you acknowledge of which or not. Chemicals should halt flushed down all drain.

    My blog - wycieczki all inclusive

  22. He preferably should know English moreover Spanish thoroughly.
    The word what tuition will concentrate on the student repeating their phrases.

    my web site :: organizacja-wczasów.pl


Please Leave a comment