The Rock Had To Learn To Be His Authentic Self In Hollywood

For years, one of Hollywood's biggest stars Dwayne Johnson entertained professional wrestling audiences as "The Rock, and was told early in his acting career that he'd have to shed his professional wrestling persona.


In his recent appearance on "The Pivot" podcast, he discussed what that process was like, and why he could never quit that side.

"When I got out of wrestling, I transitioned into Hollywood, and I wanted to have a career that hopefully had some longevity to it," Johnson began. "And I wanted to be good."

He didn't want to become boxed into just one specific genre, though — action, in this case. Rather, Johnson wanted to try his hand at a little bit of everything. Those advising him told him to diet, suggesting he was too big, and also instructed him to stop talking about wrestling; to stop calling himself "The Rock." "All this s*** that at that time, if you don't know any better and you're trying to stay focused on the North Star, you buy into it because you're trusting the people who are around you."


Johnson refused to call these people out or hold it against them, saying that they were just advising him to do what they thought was best for his career. Ultimately, he realized he couldn't do things that way, especially not after everything wrestling had given him.

"I bought into it a little bit for a few years," he admitted. "Until finally I said, 'I can't do this anymore. I gotta be me. I love wrestling, it's my life. If I wanna call myself The Rock, I'm gonna call myself the mother******* Rock ...' Fired everybody, hired a brand new team ... And at least if I fail, then I fail being myself."

If you use any quotes from this article, please credit "The Pivot" with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.