Do you smell what The Rock is cooking? And if you do, can you clue us in?
Dwayne Johnson made one final, massive announcement in 2013, just before the ball dropped, about his plans for the new year. According to the “Fast and Furious” actor, Johnson and DC Comics will be joining forces at some point in 2014:
— Dwayne Johnson (@TheRock) December 31, 2013
At the moment, we know nothing about the Rock and DC’s upcoming collaboration, except that it will result in “the cool bad assery.” That’s enough information to get excited, but still, it’s worth wondering exactly how “the cool bad assery” will manifest itself. Here are some guesses:
The “Man of Steel” Sequel
Director Zack Snyder returns to the skies with Superman in 2015, and he’s bringing a whole bunch of super-friends along for the ride. Ben Affleck is on board as Batman, and Gal Gadot is playing Wonder Woman. There are rumors that other members of the Justice League will make appearances in the “Man of Steel” sequel, like Green Lantern and The Flash. Perhaps there’s a role for the Rock here — perhaps as, say, Space Sector 2814’s second Green Lantern, John Stewart?
Or maybe there’s another “Man of Steel” role for Johnson. Maybe he’s the man to bring the film’s villain to life. There’s talk that Lex Luthor will make his debut in the “Man of Steel” sequel, and while Johnson isn’t the first actor one thinks of for Superman’s brilliant nemesis, it’s certainly a possibility. Perhaps more likely is Johnson coming aboard as a more physical villain, someone like, say, Doomsday, or even Darkseid.
The Return of Black Adam
While the “Man of Steel” sequel stands out as the likeliest bet at the moment (considering it’s the only DC Entertainment film with a release date on the calendar), there are other possibilities for Johnson and DC’s new team-up — like the return of the long-lost “Shazam.”
Once upon a time, Johnson was connected to an adaptation of “Shazam,” the DC Comics series that sees regular kid Billy Batson magically transforming into the super-powerful Captain Marvel. Johnson would have played Batson’s numero uno nemesis, Black Adam, in director Peter Segal’s planned adaptation.
Segal recently indicated that “Shazam” is no longer happening, largely due to the success of “Man of Steel” and Captain Marvel’s similarities with Superman. But perhaps the project is back on DC’s radar. Perhaps Johnson’s days with Black Adam are far from over.
The Main Man
More recently, there was talk of Johnson taking on “Lobo,” based on the cigar-chomping, space-bike-riding mercenary of the DC Universe. In 2012, “Journey 2: The Mysterious Island” filmmaker Brad Peyton was hired to bring “Lobo” to life, with Johnson later identifying himself as Peyton’s main man. Since then, however, the film appears to have stalled.
Someone at DC likely wised up and realized, “Hey, we should probably worry about Wonder Woman before we make a frickin’ ‘Lobo’ movie.” (Good call, whoever you are!) But with Gadot’s Wonder Woman on her way to the big-screen, the way is clear (or clearer) for DC to start experimenting with out-of-the-box characters and films. Johnson as “Lobo” is out-of-the-box enough, but still a safe-ish bet, given the premise of the character, and Johnson’s considerable fan-base. But as with all of these possibilities, it’s best to take the wait-and-see approach.
At the end of the day, keep in mind that Johnson and DC have done this dance a few times before, and we’ve yet to see any concrete results. Here’s hoping 2014 is the year that Johnson and DC actually make something happen, instead of, you know, just talking about it.