After his wrestling career, Dwayne Johnson went on to become so much more than just a ring presence. He became a scorpion king, a tooth fairy, a video game character, a god, a soon-to-be magic-wielding antihero, and a high-stakes professional driver-cum-CIA-agent. In short, he has become somewhat of a household name in today’s Hollywood.
However, one role, in particular, has eluded him: another high-stakes professional driver-cum-agent. We’re talking about Jack Reacher, of course.
In a recent Q&A on Facebook, Johnson revealed that he was in pursuit of the role of the titular character, one that would eventually land on the lap of Tom Cruise, who went on to do two movies with the character: Jack Reacher in 2012, and Jack Reacher: Never Go Back in 2016.
A fan of the original books by Lee Child, Johnson auditioned for the role in 2010 as he wanted to “do the character justice”, especially seeing that the written character was his build, and that they both were “bad dudes”. However, he only received the rejection call, to his disappointment.
However, Johnson pointed out that that marked a rather interesting turn for his career, as not long after, he received a phone call from Universal regarding a role in Fast Five. And from then on, the rest was history, as his character, Luke Hobbs, went on to evolve from a cameo character, to one of the leading roles in the franchise today, even coming front-and-centre in 2019’s Hobbs and Shaw spinoff.
“I’m positive that the role of Jack Reacher, because it was an established character, an IP that was well-known and beloved around the world, that I wouldn’t have had the creative space to do what I wanted with the character,” mused Johnson in the video. “I look back in gratitude that I didn’t get Jack Reacher.”
But of course, in any case the series gets rebooted for some reason, we’re confident that The Rock will smell what’s cooking, and come knocking for the role first.
Marion has a serious RPG addiction. Sometimes it bleeds into real life; he forgets to sleep because he thinks he has a Witcher’s body clock. Forgive him in advance if he suddenly blurts out terms such as “Mind Flayer” and “Magic Missile”, because never once does he stop thinking about his next Dungeons & Dragons game.