Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson will be starring as the titular DC legend in the upcoming film Black Adam, and the movie is actually fixing a major problem with The Rock’s movie formula. The Rock is one of Hollywood’s biggest stars, appearing in all kinds of blockbusters throughout the past two decades. Black Adam is set to be one of the actor’s biggest movies yet, but this unusual role for The Rock will actually be a change in his typical formula.
In the comics, Black Adam is a villain, typically fighting Shazam or other members of the Justice League. The version that The Rock is playing, though, is more of an antihero, acting as the film’s protagonist. However, just because he’s a villain now doesn’t mean the character has let go of all of his villainous tendencies. Black Adam footage was recently shown at CinemaCon, and in it, The Rock’s Black Adam replies to someone stating that “Heroes don’t kill people” before adding, “Well, I do.” This footage and Black Adam‘s first trailer show just how violent the character can be, tearing through anyone who gets in his way.
Throughout The Rock’s entire filmography, from The Game Plan to the Jumanji movies, the actor plays very similar characters. His roles typically involve him being a quippy but overall nice guy without much emotional depth. However, Black Adam is a violent killer, meaning that The Rock will stray far away from his typical acting wheelhouse. The released footage portrays Black Adam as a god amongst men, ripping through humans and stating, “I kneel before no one.” With Black Adam having grown up enslaved before becoming essentially a god, The Rock will have to bring some emotional depth to his performance to pull off the character. Black Adam is exactly the film The Rock needs to show off his range of acting, and playing a murderous jerk may help him escape his previous typecast.
The Rock actually didn’t start out as the friendly action star that he plays in most of his films. Many consider The Rock to have been his best when he was involved with the WWE in the height of the Attitude Era. This edgier side of the actor has mostly left the spotlight, only really coming out when Dwayne Johnson was in Fighting With My Family. Besides that one pro-wrestling movie, though, The Rock has been able to maintain a family-friendly, incredibly marketable brand, something that Black Adam can change.
Black Adam is a blockbuster superhero movie, meaning that it will be put in front of a lot of eyes. The Rock’s starring role will definitely show off his jerkier persona to many audiences who haven’t seen it before, possibly changing the perfect image of him that many have in their heads. By bringing back The Rock’s grit and edge, Black Adam will forever change Dwayne Johnson’s squeaky-clean movie formula for the better.
More: Who Is Black Adam? The Rock’s New DC Superhero Explained (Powers & Origin)