In his 15-year big screen career, consisting of roles in 25 films, Dwayne Johnson (at times with his WWE name “The Rock” included) has established himself as one of the industry’s most likable and bankable (to the tune of more than $2 Billion total in the U.S. alone) movie stars. High expectations surround this weekend’s release of the action comedy “Central Intelligence”, in which he teams-up with fellow cinematic superstar Kevin Hart. Here are some of Johnson’s highlights to date:
Following a series of ho-hum action films that didn’t make much noise at the box office, Johnson turned to family fare in 2007 with Disney’s football comedy, “The Game Plan”. It’s not a very good film (I prefer Johnson’s PG-rated work in the underappreciated “Tooth Fairy” – alongside the legendary Julie Andrews, and particularly as adventurer Hank in “Journey 2: The Mysterious Island”) but it got him noticed by the masses and set him on the right path.
Next Johnson contributed to a few action comedies with supporting roles. He partnered-up with Samuel L. Jackson in “The Other Guys” and took matters into his own hands (before 99 and Maxwell Smart could stop him) as Agent 23 in “Get Smart”. And the three most recent “Fast & Furious” films, with Johnson’s Hobbs character as a quality foil to Vin Diesel’s Toretto, are the highest-grossing films on his resume, with last summer’s surprisingly good earthquake thriller “San Andreas” right behind.
“Fast 8”, an adaptation of the TV classic “Baywatch”, and a new version of “Jumanji” (with Hart and Jack Black) are on Johnson’s Summer 2017 menu. He’ll also play the superhero “Shazam!” in the WB/DC Comics adaptation in 2019. But this November sees his most interesting project: the Disney animated musical “Moana”. Johnson will lend his voice to demi-god, Maui, and perform original songs composed by Tony Award-winning “Hamilton” mastermind, Lin Manuel-Miranda.
Johnson, right now, is as solid a brand as there is in the entertainment world. Solid as a Rock.