Dwayne Johnson is saying goodbye to the Fast & Furious franchise that helped launch his successful acting career.
The action film series includes nine movies and a spinoff, grossing more than $6 billion in box office sales in its 20-year span. One of the most recognizable brands in the world, the franchise attracts global audiences with fast cars, heists, beautiful women, illegal street racing, and intricate storylines.
The former pro-wrestler, who is now one of the highest-paid actors in Hollywood, announced he will not be working on any more Fast & Furious movies.
The Rock was missing from ‘F9: The Fast Saga’
F9: The Fast Saga is the ninth movie in the long-running film series. It was recently released in theaters and to streaming services.
Vin Diesel reprised his commanding role as Dominic Toretto. Pro wrestler John Cena is joining the cast of actors this time around, playing Dom’s brother, Jakob Toretto. Tyrese Gibson is back as Roman, along with Michelle Rodriguez as Letty. The Rock is noticeably absent.
Johnson, who portrayed Luke Hobbs, first appeared in Fast Five in 2011. The Rock had recurring roles in the following three films and appeared in the 2019 spin-off movie Hobbs & Shaw.
The Hollywood Reporter revealed The Rock would not appear in the next two movies. On a press junket for his recently released Disney film, The Jungle Cruise, Johnson reportedly said, “I wish them well on Fast 9. And I wish them best of luck on Fast 10 and Fast 11 and the rest of the Fast & Furious movies they do that will be without me.”
Dwayne Johnson taking a break from the ‘Fast & Furious’ franchise
Since 2016, Johnson and Diesel have had an ongoing feud. The two started fighting, questioning one another’s acting abilities, and disagreeing on moviemaking techniques.
The fight hit its peak when Johnson took to Instagram, saying, “Some [male co-stars] conduct themselves as stand-up men and true professionals, while others don’t. The ones that don’t are too chicken shit to do anything about it anyway. Candy a**es.” The Rock later confirmed the co-star he was referring to was Diesel.
Cinema Blend reported The Rock did not share any scenes with his problematic co-star in the 8th installment of Fast & Furious. Diesel recently told Men’s Health, “It was a tough character to embody, the Hobbs character. My approach at the time was a lot of tough love to assist in getting that performance where it needed to be.”
Many fans thought the actors had moved on from their differences with one another. According to Looper, several things happened to keep “the feud flame burning bright.”
The Ballers actor not appearing in F9: The Fast Saga was a telltale sign that trouble was brewing. Diesel’s interview spewing “tough love” caused The Rock to respond by saying he “laughed hard.” AV Club reported the mega-star said, “I think everyone had a laugh at that. And I’ll leave it at that.”
Will The Rock reprise his role as Hobbs in the ‘Hobbs & Shaw’ spinoff?
Despite the constant bickering, loyal fans of the franchise are disappointed that the long-running film series will end without Hobbs involved in the finale of the main saga. The 11th installment of the series is expected to be the last.
Screen Crush pointed out that “it would be a little unsatisfying to build the franchise to a big final crescendo only for Johnson’s Luke Hobbs not to show up to help Diesel’s Dom and his crew one last time.”
Even though Hobbs was a side character, he was a chosen member of Dom’s family. Screen Rant explained, “Johnsons’ on-screen charisma with the other cast members will certainly be missed.” Although, they did report that “viewers won’t miss Hobbs for long as Johnson is definitely returning in the next Hobbs & Shaw film.”
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