John Cena continues the transition from WWE’s top superstar to Hollywood’s leading man, having worked with acclaimed producers like Judd Apatow and Steven Spielberg. Cena recently sat down with ESPN and discussed his future in the WWE, Hollywood, and if retiring from the ring is on the horizon. Although he would like to maintain a schedule that gives adequate time to both his passions, Cena explains how receiving any type of injury in WWE would jeopardize the movie making process and the film’s final product.
“Anything that you rely on your body for an end result, time is gonna catch up with you,” Cena said. “So there is gonna come a point where I can no longer keep up with the pace. I made a promise to myself years ago, years before I ever found my passion for being on screen, when I can’t keep up with the pace, I gotta walk away. I don’t wanna take a ticket buyers money and have them sit down and be like, ‘Eh, he’s just hanging on’. I don’t ever want that feeling. So, I don’t think that correlates with what I’m doing now. The biggest difficulty is trying to juggle stuff because I have learned, and I’m trying to fight this system but I’m losing, once you’re in production for a movie, they don’t allow you to wrestle. Because I can’t go to a WWE taping and have my nose put over here.
“Not only doesn’t it look good, it’s, ‘Man, you don’t look right.’ So they shut the whole movie down, (there are) 150 people that are expecting a paycheck for that movie and I just screwed them out of their wage. It ups the budget of the movie, so I just put the movie behind the eight ball of possibly being a financial success.”
Cena’s sparse appearances in a WWE ring have been met with some scrutiny, especially considering Cena once mocked Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson for doing the same thing and putting big budget films ahead of wrestling. Cena acknowledged that he was wrong for bad mouthing The Rock and he now fully understands what it’s like trying to juggle WWE with Hollywood.
“As much as I want to do everything, you can’t,” Cena explained. “And this is a giant misunderstanding that I had about what Dwayne was doing, about what The Rock was doing. Because he does movie after movie, after movie, after movie, and I know the feeling of wanting to go back. And I’m going back as soon as I can, but I can’t go back until I’m done with this. So, I totally get it. And I kinda called him out for it and that was me being an ass, and I was totally wrong, and ignorant, and young, and stupid, and I’ve told him I’m sorry but I think that’s something our fans don’t understand.”
You can check out Cena’s full comments in the video above.
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit ESPN with an H/T to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.