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Do you smell what the Rock is cooking? 2 new movies

Hello ladies and gentlemen, Muldoon here with a bit of fun casting news. As you can tell by the insanely witty (/sarcasm) title, Dwayne Johnson has just been attached to two interesting projects. Variety broke the news not that long ago that the lovable muscle headed badass will be taking the lead role in Brett Ratner's HERCULES as well as hopping on board CIUDAD (a film based on The Russo Brother's yet to be released graphic novel of the same name).

So what's this Ratner HERCULES flick all about?

Ratner's movie is based on Steve Moore's graphic novel HERCULES: THE THRACIAN WARS, which is summed up here:

When the Thracian King summons the Greek hero and his six battle-worn companions to mold the Thracian army into a bloodthirsty, ruthless killing machine, the Son of Zeus rushes to answer the call of war and gold. But within the nation of Thrace lies an epic tale of war, murder, deception, and sacrifice that shows Hercules how far from grace he’s fallen- and what he must accomplish for redemption.

After Johnson's latest stinker, I'm excited to see the guy back in action and doing what he does best - kicking ass. I'm actually a real fan of the guy and think he's actually pretty versatile. (Blasphemy, I know...) Seriously, the guy's funny and sincere yet can instantly hulk out and totally action star it up. Finger's crossed - HERCULES will be a much brighter shade of SCORPION KING. I'm hesitant, but intrigued. How about you fine folks? You down to see The Rock as the son of Zeus?


-Mike McCutchen



Readers Talkback
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  • March 6, 2012, 11:34 a.m. CST

    Rock playing Hercules? FUCK YEAH.

    by Robert Evans

    Directed by Ratner? FUCK THAT.

  • Do it low budget, crank up the action and violence, and I think you have a winner!!!

  • March 6, 2012, 11:37 a.m. CST


    by Muldoon

    That would be almost too badass for theaters... Seriously, why is that movie not the works yet? Or is it?

  • March 6, 2012, 11:38 a.m. CST

    Steroids. The rock is cooking steroids.

    by Garbageman33

  • March 6, 2012, 11:40 a.m. CST

    I can see Johnson as Hercules

    by rev_skarekroe

    You think they'll give him a beard?

  • March 6, 2012, 11:41 a.m. CST


    by la_sith

  • March 6, 2012, 11:44 a.m. CST

    Maybe I'm in the minority

    by chad kuhns

    But I'm thinking he'd make a pretty decent Luke Cage. I'm surprised he hasn't forayed into the superhero market yet.

  • March 6, 2012, 11:45 a.m. CST


    by fat_rancor_keeper

    best aicn poster ever?

  • March 6, 2012, 11:47 a.m. CST

    Muldoon, 3dman

    by Kent

    Savage Dragon is no where near development into a film. Its creator, Erik Larsen is too focused on the book itself to worry about a movie. Rock would make an interesting Dragon, though.

  • March 6, 2012, 11:47 a.m. CST

    "best aicn poster ever?"

    by slone13

    Hardly. Mildly amusing at best.

  • March 6, 2012, 11:48 a.m. CST

    Journey 2 "stinker"

    by Last_of_the_Emurites

    It may not have been a good movie (according to overall reviews), but the movie has made $85 million domestically as of today, more than making back the initial cost of the film. In my book, that doesn't classify it as a "stinker," which in many ways refers to an "Ishtar"-level bomb. The movie wasn't made for the same guys that saw "The Rundown," for example. It was made for kids and families, not teens and bros.

  • March 6, 2012, 11:48 a.m. CST

    What happened to the Charlie Pride movie?

    by cobrakinte

    I remember reading about it somewhere but have not heard anything since. I think it would be cool to see him pull of something like that. Then they could follow it with a Jason Statham movie where he plays Hank Williams.

  • March 6, 2012, 11:52 a.m. CST

    Journey 2 "stinker"

    by slone13

    $270 million worldwide. Pretty successful stinker right there.

  • March 6, 2012, 11:53 a.m. CST

    He's like a living cartoon character...

    by bubcus

    ... I don't think I take him seriously but he is entertaining.

  • I worked on the graphic novel this is based on for Radical Comics a while back, and it's no wher near as campy or tongue-n-cheek as something like the old Steve Reeves/Lou Ferrigno movies, or the shitty (yeah, I said it) television series with K-Sorb. Actually, not campy at all -- Moore was very focused on using the original mythology and corresponding actual world history of the time in putting it together. It's a pretty good read, truth be told. Also interested if they'll give Herc the Lion's Mane headdress and spiked club, as seen in the graphic novel (based on a design by none other than the great Steranko). Could be cool if done right -- Hercules has always had that potential -- but I trust Ratner will bring on the cheese but the truckload for this, so... colour me doubtful. Still, there's always hope.

  • March 6, 2012, 12:03 p.m. CST

    The Rock will destroy Cena at Wrestlemania!!!

    by Tikidonkeypunch

  • March 6, 2012, 12:06 p.m. CST

    The Rock should get better movies than he does.

    by Sardonic

    The dude's got charisma, he just never flexes his acting muscle.

  • March 6, 2012, 12:10 p.m. CST

    lord_albion is that a new Dragonball Z movie???

    by Tikidonkeypunch

  • March 6, 2012, 12:12 p.m. CST


    by Rob

    SOUNDS LIKE THE ROCK IS STARTING TO GET IT. He needs to start doing almost exclusively throwbacks to the 80's and early 90's action stars. Movies that kick ass and take names later. The Rockhas been mimicking the middle period of Arnold's career ('90-'96) where he shifts between a serious action film and family friendly ventures and comedies. (The Rock ['05-'12]: DOOM, SOUTHLAND TALES, THE GAME PLAN, GET SMART, RACE TO WITCH MOUNTAIN, PLANET 51, THE TOOTH FAIRY, THE OTHER GUYS, FASTER, FAST FIVE, JOURNEY 2) (Arnold['88-'96]: TWINS, TOTAL RECALL, KINDERGARTEN COP, T2, LAST ACTION HERO, TRUE LIES, JUNIOR, ERASER, JINGLE ALL THE WAY). The Rock needs to stop the Journey 2 type films and do 3-4 ACTION films in a row. Just be the total fucking badass movie star you're meant to be

  • March 6, 2012, 12:16 p.m. CST


    by Lord Albion

    King Kamehameha unified the Hawaiian islands. The Rock was rumoured to be involved with a project to bring the story to the screen since The Scorpion King days. I suppose it's easier to keep dipping into Greek and Roman mythology as it is more familiar to the audience.

  • March 6, 2012, 12:18 p.m. CST

    Journey 2

    by KentBates

    I don't understand the hate for the movie. It wasn't intended for adults who want gritty action and violence. It was designed for kids and young adults. I took my five year old to see it. He loved it, and even though I didn't think it was great, I loved the fact that he loved it. I knew going in it wasn't designed for me, so I was mildly entertained, but nowhere near disappointed. The other day I picked him up from school and when he was around his female classmates I whispered in his ear "pop your pecs" and he laughed!!!! I love the movie just for that.

  • March 6, 2012, 12:18 p.m. CST


    by roger

    I totally agree. His charisma and action chops are off the chart. He could own Hollywood just as he owned the WWE and is starting to be a major social media player. With that being said, I think the two potential characters he needs to portray to really put him over are Namor and Black Adam. Although with Herc now, BA would most likely be out.

  • March 6, 2012, 12:21 p.m. CST

    I actually thought he was pretty good in Be Cool.

    by Insidious_Bastard

    That scene where he's trying on his new clothes and red boots . . . it just killed me. I agree, and I know full well I'm in the minority here, that he is versatile. He just hasn't been offered a role with any real "weight" to it. Or, probably more accurate, he just hasn't chosen the right role. He's a charismatic guy and has shown that he can do action and comedy. He just needs a defining role. Walking Tall, and I'm not saying it was a great movie, showed that he's got some range. I think it showed what he's capable of. Hopefully, he'll start taking risks with more dramatic roles in the future.

  • March 6, 2012, 12:24 p.m. CST

    Die invictus

    by Logan_1973


  • March 6, 2012, 12:29 p.m. CST

    I've said it before and I'll say it again...

    by chip2po

    Someone needs to write an Escape From New York-ish type action movie where he plays a sarcastic, anti-establishment anti-hero that is a slightly less over-the-top variation of his Rock persona from wrestling. It will be his Snake Plissken role. I can't believe this hasn't been done yet.

  • March 6, 2012, 12:34 p.m. CST

    The Rock for Kraven the Hunter!

    by jim

    or Ian McShane, I'd be happy with either.

  • March 6, 2012, 12:36 p.m. CST

    Jack Reacher

    by skywalter

    Cruise should give up the starring role in One Shot to the Rock. Reacher is almost the exact physical description of the Rock - 6'5" 250. Kicks ass, speaks few words, perfect for the Rock.

  • March 6, 2012, 12:37 p.m. CST


    by OhWhatTheFeckEver

    Agreed on that one! Okay, so Johnson has played the kiddie movie card a bit too much, but when he does hit the action movies he pretty much steals every scene he's in. The guy has definitely got charisma and he can act. I'll give anything he's in a chance.

  • March 6, 2012, 12:38 p.m. CST

    FASTER was awesome.

    by impetus

    Not to be confused with that similarly named Fast & Furious franchise, FASTER was a great revenge/redemption story. I've been hoping for some more good movies from ol' Rock ever since The Rundown.

  • March 6, 2012, 12:38 p.m. CST

    Only Kevin Sorbo is Deserving

    by Afzal

    and Lucy Lawless needs to be in it ;)

  • March 6, 2012, 12:39 p.m. CST


    by Pipple

    I'll give Ratner a break, but he better not give us some more of his mediocre passable film making. Or if he does, at least balance it out with some hot chicks like he did in rush hour 3. And I like the Rock. He looks like he's able to fuck girls with his eyes alone.

  • March 6, 2012, 12:39 p.m. CST

    The Rock for Commander Shepard..... Mass Effect

    by Afzal

  • March 6, 2012, 12:41 p.m. CST

    the rock will make john cena his bitch at mania

    by fat_rancor_keeper

    he said so last night on raw u know

  • March 6, 2012, 12:43 p.m. CST

    The Rundown

    by The PimpDragon

    Should have been the film to get him to better scripts because it allowed him to break out of just "tough guy" to be a character who actually had dreams that had nothing to do with violence or weapons. He wanted to be a chef and open his own restaurant. I thought his character was fun, unique (for an action film) and that he did a good job of downplaying the machismo. I thought he was great in Faster which, while not a great script, was a fun 70s vengence style film. Dude's got chops - just needs a real chance (and a strong director) to help him show them off. I'd love Tarantino or Fincher to work with the guy.

  • March 6, 2012, 12:51 p.m. CST


    by Darth Busey

  • March 6, 2012, 12:58 p.m. CST

    someone mention Bret Ratner? Le the roasting Commence......

    by D o o d

  • March 6, 2012, 12:59 p.m. CST

    Is Thrace getting love because of Spartacus?

    by torontoxic

    Seems odd to see it named in the plot for this one.

  • March 6, 2012, 1:09 p.m. CST

    Ratner... gay comments... mustn't give in... can't... sarcasm seeping out...

    by impossibledreamers

  • March 6, 2012, 1:12 p.m. CST

    I wish he would have done Spy Hunter and that Hawaiian King movie

    by Jaster Mareel

    But yeah ok, Hercules....whatever.

  • March 6, 2012, 1:14 p.m. CST

    he's too big for Sub-Mariner

    by sunwukong86

  • March 6, 2012, 1:16 p.m. CST

    I think the Rock is great when doing straight Action movies

    by Wcwlkr

    So I'm good with this. I really love the Rock, it's just his family friendly pieces of crap I hate. But I don't fault him for it, he's making that paper.

  • March 6, 2012, 1:24 p.m. CST

    Thrace had love before Spartacus

    by mistergreen

  • March 6, 2012, 1:29 p.m. CST

    The Rock sinking like a stone....

    by jellypop

    Clash of the Titans meets Troy then? Ugh. Brett Ratner is the new Ron Howard.

  • March 6, 2012, 1:33 p.m. CST

    The Rock has the potential to be this generation's Arnie

    by davidwebb

    Instead he's another Hulk Hogan. Doesn't help that Hollywood is in a creative rut right now, he's not going to be offered anything as good or iconic as Terminator or Commando anytime soon.

  • March 6, 2012, 1:37 p.m. CST

    Robert Sherman obit?

    by jimbojones123

    He has an Oscar!

  • March 6, 2012, 2:13 p.m. CST

    who else started to rewatch the WWF during it's "attitude" era from 99-2001?

    by DanielnocharismaCraig

    So much classic promos, storylines, and just straight up wrestling action during that time period. The Rock is probably the greatest on the mic that ever was.

  • March 6, 2012, 2:17 p.m. CST

    I love the Rock, Hate Brett Ratner

    by shalashaska

    If it happens to get decent reviews, I will see it for Dwayne. He always layeth the smacketh down on a jabroni or two.

  • March 6, 2012, 2:17 p.m. CST

    by Edward

    The only thing the Rock is cookings is horrible films.

  • The guy is gold when he gets in front of a crowd and just rants. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy him in flicks and in just about every one he's in he's usually the best thing about it. But he does this whole "I'm back" with the WWE then disappears for months on end. too bad he'll loose at Wrestlemania because he has to go off and shoot all those movies. Ah well, even bi-annual visits from The Rock are better than the years-long gaps he had before. Let him win at Wrestlemania, Vince, and have an absent WWE champion, that could be funny.

  • March 6, 2012, 2:26 p.m. CST

    The Rock as the Sub-Mariner?

    by jellypop

    Nah. I'd go for DJ Qualls...

  • March 6, 2012, 2:32 p.m. CST

    by Ricky Cooper

    layeth the smackdown on Cena and layeth the smackdown on some of the scripts you're trying to read.

  • March 6, 2012, 2:34 p.m. CST

    He's alright

    by King_Ink

    I wouldn't go too far and say that Dwayne is an amazing actor, but he's definitely shown some versatility. 1 - Be Cool. He was funny, played well beside Vince Vaughn, and was able to make fun of himself. 2 - Southland Tales. I know that hot mess of a follow-up to Donnie Darko was disappointing, but if you go back and check it out you'll see some real breakthrough performances from most of the actors in that film. Dwayne Johnson included. 3 - Faster. Straight up tough guy. He's big, bad, mean, and everything you want in an action hero. I personally think that this guy has to cut ties with his wrestling roots before he's taken seriously. Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson sounds like someone who won a bowling championship years ago and likes to remind everyone of it. Dwayne Johnson sounds like an actor.

  • March 6, 2012, 3:04 p.m. CST

    Ciudad is Spanish for 'city'

    by Musicman247

    Just thought it should be pointed out.

  • March 6, 2012, 3:06 p.m. CST


    by Rupee88

    Taken seriously by who? By you? He's obviously taken seriously by studio execs and directors and millions of moviegoers. He's almost A list at this point. I am not even a big fan of the guy but you talk nonsense

  • March 6, 2012, 3:07 p.m. CST

    RE: Journey 2

    by Muldoon

    You guys are right, that's a kids movie and yeah it made plenty of money - maybe "stinker" was a bad choice of words. I just can't help but lump it in with Tooth Fairy. That might not be 100% fair, but hey that's just my opinion.

  • March 6, 2012, 3:15 p.m. CST

    Robert E. Howard´s The Hour of the Dragon

    by CuervoJones

    Starring The Rock. Give it to me.

  • March 6, 2012, 3:20 p.m. CST


    by MrLongbaugh

    I heard at one time that the Rock was going to be playing Hannibal. I wonder what ever happened to that. And also Leo was going to be doing a Viking movie.

  • March 6, 2012, 3:32 p.m. CST

    Can you smell what the Rock is Cooking?

    by v3d

    Duane Johnson IS The Galloping Gourmet!

  • March 6, 2012, 3:59 p.m. CST


    by J-Dizzle

    If so, please kill yourself.

  • March 6, 2012, 4:37 p.m. CST

    I dont know..i like the Rock but i dont think Herc fits him.

    by KilliK

    Unless he leaves some beard.

  • March 6, 2012, 5:18 p.m. CST

    Fair play muldoon

    by Kill List Hammertime

    One of the few AICN writers who can admit if he's been a bit hasty. Well done that man. However, I too thought journey 2 was shit. But as previous posters mentioned I'm not the demographic. I'd love to see Rocky in a really well written dramatic role, with action of course, as I think he'd be awesome. And he should definitely play Luke Cage, next Avengers movie maybe?

  • March 6, 2012, 6:21 p.m. CST

    Chris Jericho could have been as popular as Stone Cold or Rock.

    by DanielnocharismaCraig

    But got buried by Triple H. Who could make a damn fine Conan by himself however.

  • March 6, 2012, 8:05 p.m. CST

    Journey 2 -- I don't understand the hate for the movie.

    by Captain Mal

    In the trailer, somebody gets pooped on. That was a selling point. If you don't see how even kids deserve better than that, I'm not sure what to tell you.

  • March 6, 2012, 8:54 p.m. CST

    The Rock needs to do more stuff like Fast Five & The Rundown

    by Rebel Scumb

    Both were really solid action/comedy movies, which are rare enough these days

  • I agree. I think he will be a good Heracles/Hercules, as long as the script is good. I'm trying to think of some other characters he could play. The Rock isn't really all that much like Arnold, which he's been compared to in the past. Arnold can look pretty damn intimidating in some of his films. It is that stare he does, especially in The Terminator films. The Rock seems a bit more of an approachable person. He needs to do roles that take advantage of that fun loving good nature he has about him. Then again, he might be smart to start moving away from stuff like GI Joe. He might need to do something a bit harder and darker with a more serious story to it. I just hope that The Rock and Vin Diesel stay away from the goofy comedies like The Tooth Fairy and that one where Vin Diesel is babysitting a bunch of kids. If Vin and The Rock hadn't already starred together in Fast Five, I'd suggest that it could be fun to see The Rock as a bounty hunter tracking down Riddick in the next Riddick/Pitch Black sequel.

  • March 6, 2012, 10:09 p.m. CST

    The Rock should be Kratos!!!

    by Deano316

    God of War the Movie!!!

  • March 6, 2012, 11:09 p.m. CST

    jimbojones123, there are times when this site goes out of its way ...

    by I Max U Mini

    ... to not do an obit. Bert Schneider, the man who produced, "Head", "Easy Rider", "Five Easy Pieces", "The Last Picture Show", and "Days of Heaven" died in December. I mean this guy won an Oscar for producing the anti-war film, "Hearts and Minds". It didn't matter how many times I brought it up, it was ignored. I can remember years ago when they failed to do a proper goodbye to acclaimed character actor, Jack Elam. Sometimes, someone notices, other times they do not. What they really need is an obit regular column that any of the writers can post to, but they also need an Obit editor and an email addy for recommendations. But what do I know?

  • Both were good action flicks. DOOM had cool sequences with some great last practical FX by Stan Winston. Cool guns too. Carl Urban did a nice job too.

  • March 7, 2012, 5:15 a.m. CST

    What happened to The Rock starring in...

    by Master Bruce

    the SHAZAM! movie? I remember reading about it years ago & he couldn't decide if he should play Captain Marvel or Black Adam. It's a simple premise Hollywood...SUPERMAN MEETS BIG...look into it.

  • March 7, 2012, 6:34 a.m. CST

    Mr Laungbaugh

    by Hipshot

    I think that was Vin Diesel who was going to play Hannibal--I worked on an animated version of it over at BET a couple of years back.

  • March 7, 2012, 6:40 a.m. CST

    The reason the Rock has movie problems...

    by Hipshot

    In my opinion, is that he has to avoid romantic roles, or risk rejection by the audience. I know I'll probably get flamed for this, but it's a statistical fact that no non-white male actor has ever had a love scene in a movie that earns over 100 million--a clear sign (to me) that there is a problem with audience identification. Vin Diesel comes closest--and he can "pass" for white. The Rock cannot. Take a look at Arnie's filmography and you'll see that there are actually a fair number of romantic pairings. The Rock, Will Smith, Denzel, and whoever have to avoid sexual situations in their films, or the white male audience mysteriously thinks the film sucks. Rock isn't quite pale enough to get across that line. So he has to choose his movies artificially, rather than simply find the best roles. And all you'd have to do to convince me I'm wrong is point to a single film that passed 100 million domestic where the black or Asian male star got laid. Find one. You can't.

  • March 7, 2012, 6:49 a.m. CST

    FASTER was awesome

    by David Cloverfield

    I'm surprised too. It looked terrible at first glance.

  • He should be the next Stallone for reals!

  • No, Rock, in fact there's nothing you could do that I would wanna smell.

  • March 7, 2012, 8:33 a.m. CST

    The Rock. For people who couldn't get Vin Diesel.

    by Subtitles_Off

  • March 7, 2012, 11:58 a.m. CST

    his semi-corny personality fits Ratner's style just fine


  • March 7, 2012, 1:30 p.m. CST


    by Billy_D_Williams