Dwayne Johnson Is Not The Only Pro Wrestler 'Running For President'

John Cena is running for president — at least on screen in "The Independent," a new film streaming on Peacock. "The Independent" is a political thriller with Cena playing a former Olympic athlete who has launched a third-party campaign for president. However, a pair of journalists uncover a scandal in the candidate's past that could potentially derail his bid for the White House.


"The Independent" premieres on November 2, and Cena took to Twitter to plug the film. "An opportunity to make a 'run' for the Oval Office," Cena tweeted, sharing a photo of his candidate character from the film. "#TheIndependent premieres TOMORROW on @Peacock!" The initial reviews of "The Independent" have been mixed. David Ehrlich of IndieWire dismissed it as a "toothless political thriller," although he praised Cena for continuing to "channel his WWE charm into distressingly uncertain hero types (as opposed to Dwayne Johnson, who forcibly muscles his flawed characters into heroes), as if the actor recognizes the inherent eeriness of his own too-perfect screen image."

But The Hollywood Reporter's David Rooney complained that Cena and co-star Jodie Turner-Smith, who plays one of the reporters, "lack the range to bring much shading to two key characters." Cena is not the first WWE superstar to play an aspiring presidential candidate — Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson played himself as a candidate in the 2032 presidential election in the series "Young Rock" and also mused that he might want to run in real life. Of course, there is already unlikely common ground between WWE and The White House via WWE Hall of Famer and former U.S. president Donald Trump, but that's another story.