Another week, another film that Dwayne Johnson signs on to star in. Dwayne Johnson is a non-stop freight train who makes one big movie after another.
Netflix has just secured the right to an original film pitch from writer Tom Wheeler (The Lego Ninjago Movie) currently entitled John Henry and The Statesmen. The film will be directed by Jake Kasdan with Dwayne Johnson set to star. The two talents previously worked together on Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle.
Johnson will take on the role of John Henry who is one of the most popular figures from folklore and legend from all around the world. For those of you not familiar with John Henry, here’s a little background info:
John Henry is an African American folk hero. He is said to have worked as a "steel-driving man"—a man tasked with hammering a steel drill into rock to make holes for explosives to blast the rock in constructing a railroad tunnel. According to legend, John Henry's prowess as a steel-driver was measured in a race against a steam-powered rock drilling machine, a race that he won only to die in victory with hammer in hand as his heart gave out from stress. The story of John Henry is told in a classic folk song, which exists in many versions, and has been the subject of numerous stories, plays, books, and novels. Various locations, including Big Bend Tunnel in West Virginia, Lewis Tunnel in Virginia, and Coosa Mountain Tunnel in Alabama, have been suggested as the site of the contest.
This is easily a perfect role for Johnson to take on, especially with his muscular Physique. Johnson had this to say in a statement:
“Netflix is the perfect partner and platform for us to continue entertaining our global audience in a disruptive way. These diverse characters speak to a legacy of storytelling that is more relevant than ever and span across a worldwide audience regardless of age, gender, race or geography.”
Producer Dany Garcia said:
“We have been committed to an international storytelling model for more than a decade. Our partnership with Netflix is giving us an incredible opportunity to reach a broad and diverse audience in the most accessible and intimate manner. We are absolutely thrilled with the opportunity.”
Scott Stuber, head of Netflix’s film group, added:
“Dwayne is a global superstar, inarguably one of the most popular actors in the world. He and Jake are a tremendous duo with a proven track record of entertaining audiences worldwide. We’re delighted to be able to partner with them and collaborate with Seven Bucks Productions and FPC. This is a story with universal appeal and we can’t wait to bring these characters to families around the globe.”
Hiram Garcia then added the following statement:
“Developing an expansive universe of characters that present a needle-moving premise while entertaining our domestic and international audiences, is priority for Seven Bucks Productions. Tom’s brilliant concept aligned perfectly with our company’s creative sensibilities. We are ecstatic to develop this shared universe populated by a vast library of American and international folk heroes. The possibilities are limitless.”
The movie is also said to bring together an ensemble cast of actors. With Johnson on boar, I’m sure he’ll surround himself with some of the best talent working in Hollywood.