A phenomenal character, Dwayne Johnson has carved for himself a successful brand in wrestling and entertainment. The young boy who struggled to find purpose in his teenage years is now an inspirational figure many youngsters look up to. Known for his signature enormous muscles and creativity in movies, Johnson is a versatile entertainer who is gifted in acting, singing and showmanship. Since 1999 when he debuted in acting, The Rock has seen incredible success which few in Hollywood and WWE can contend with. Though Johnson is a popular figure globally, there are certain facts about the retired pro wrestler that few fans know. In this article, we present the 20 interesting Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson facts.
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1. The Rock is a third-generation wrestler
The Rock is indeed one of the most successful wrestlers and probably the most popular wrestler from his family, but few are aware of the fact that Johnson’s father and grandfather were wrestlers. His father known as Rocky Johnson was one of the wrestlers who were the first black wrestlers to claim the WWE tag team championship. In 2008, he inducted his grandfather, Peter Maivia and his father into the WWE Hall of Fame.
2. Dwayne Johnson was constantly on the move
From his childhood to his teenage years, Johnson was always on the move along with his parents as a result of his father’s wrestling lifestyle. Before he became an adult, Johnson had lived in 38 of the 50 states in the US. Aside from that, he also lived in New Zealand with his mother’s family. Due to this, he had to change school on several occasions.
3. Dayne Johnson made the word ‘Smackdown’ enter the Merriam-Webster dictionary
A natural wrestler with a knack for incredible showmanship, Johnson had several catchphrases which WWE fans loved. One of such catchphrases ‘lay the smackdown’ became a hit among fans. The word ‘smackdown’ thus travelled so far and garnered enough popularity that in 2007, the edition of that year’s Merriam-Webster collegiate dictionary contained the word.
4. He once saved his mother’s life
Johnson is known to portray characters in movies where he saves people from terrifying situations where death is almost a certainty, but in reality, Dwayne Johnson is a perfect representation of his movie character. When he was 15 years old, his family were going through a rough time, and losing their home compounded their problems. His mother, Ata Johnson who was overwhelmed with anxiety, stopped their car on a highway in Nashville and attempted to walk into oncoming traffic. Dwayne Johnson swiftly held her, preventing her from committing suicide.
5. He sometimes does not stay on his diet
For a man as physically fit and agile as Johnson, a healthy diet is one of the secrets behind his amazing figure. But sometimes, Johnson admits that he goes off his diet to enjoy some foods, which his health consultant definitely will not condone. Johnson admits when he goes off his diet, he eats peanut butter, double dough pizza and diet coke.
6. Johnson’s first onscreen role was acting as his dad
In 1999, when young Johnson decided to venture into acting, the first role he played was portraying his father in an episode titled ‘The Wrestling Show’ of the That 70’s show. Since then, he has gone on to act several blockbuster movies.
7. He encountered trouble with the law as a teenager
Johnson had a really tough teenage life which saw him on the move constantly, saving his mother from suicide and struggling to find his path and purpose in life. An embattled Johnson would get into fight often and he sometimes will knock out his opponent, which will bring the police knocking. Aside from that, he got arrested for stealing and for fraud. For a 17 years old boy, Johnson had quite a bit of struggle with the Law.
8. Dwayne Johnson wanted to join the CIA or FBI
How Ironic. For a young boy like Johnson who had trouble with the law on numerous occasions, Johnson wanted to work for the FBI or the CIA. His desire to work for one of the two top law enforcement agencies, made him study criminology and psychology at the University of Miami. But when a professor told him a law degree is likely required, he decided that a career in the CIA or FBI wasn’t for him.
9. He was an unusual teenager
Aside from the troubles he got in as a teenager which includes the numerous fights, Johnson was an unusual teenager with an intimidating figure which he sometimes used in the wrong way. His school mates thought he was an undercover cop as a result of his hugely built figure. A funny thing for a 16 years old boy.
10. He once threatened one of his teachers
Upon returning from a two-week suspension in school, Johnson decided not to use the student bathroom and made use of the teacher’s bathroom. One of his teacher caught him in the act, scolded him and ordered him to leave. But Johnson threatened the teacher who on seeing his hugely built figure, was intimidated. Johnson, however, apologized to the teacher the next day. The teacher was the one who encouraged Johnson to play football in high school.
11. Johnson Feuded with Fast and Furious star, Vin Diesel
Throughout his career, Johnson has been involved in feuds with several WWE stars such as John Cena, but his feud with fellow Fast and Furious star, Vin Diesel is one of the most popular. The two top stars refused to act in the same scene in the eighth sequel of the Fast and Furious series, entitled the Fate of the Furious. The feud which gathered media attention has since been put to rest.
12. He was once scared of spiders
For a man as big and strong as Johnson, you may feel he is a fearless warrior with no fears. But Johnson was once scared of spiders, mostly, tarantula. In the Ellen DeGeneres Show which he appeared in, in 2007, he faced his fear. Following that, he revealed he has gotten over his fear of spiders. He also revealed that roller coasters make him nervous.
13. Dwayne Johnson is Canadian
Though he was born in the United States, Johnson is a Canadian citizen. In honour of his father’s heritage, he fulfilled the requirement to become a Canadian citizen in 2009.
14. Johnson recently got married for the second time
In 1997, Johnson got married to Dany Garcia, who is the mother of his first child. Their union produced only one child and in June 2001, the couple agreed to part ways. He then began dating Lauren Hashian, who gave birth to two children for him. In August 2019, the lovebirds tied the nuptial knot in Hawaii.
15. He loves country music
Johnson absolutely loves country music. He admits that his love for country music dates back to his teenage years in Nashville. His college football teammate says Johnson often sings country music on the team bus. Jamey Johnson, Merle Haggard, George Strait as well as Johnny Paycheck are some of his favourite country music stars.
16. A boy once saved his brother’s life as a result of Johnson’s exploits in the San Andreas Movie
In 2017, a 10-year-old Detriot boy, Jacob O’Connor, saved his two years old brother’s life after he saw him face down in the swimming pool. He swiftly pulled his brother from the pool and gave him compression, which he learnt from Johnson’s character in the movie, San Andreas.
17. Roman Reigns is The Rock’s cousin
WWE wrestler, Roman Reigns who is one of the most successful and most popular wrestlers in the WWE is Dwayne Johnson’s cousin. The pair who are both second cousins acted as brothers in the Fast and Furious spin-off, Hobbs and Shaw, released in 2019.
18. Dwayne Johnson has a lucrative fashion deal with Under Armour
Johnson has one of the most financially successful deals with Under Armour which produces clothes and shoes in partnership with Johnson. The project which is called Project Rock is one of the fans favourites. In May 2018, upon the release of the Project Rock 1 sneakers, it sold out in just a day.
19. He once held the World Guinness Record for the most selfies
During the premiere of his San Andreas movie in 2015, Johnson took 105 selfies in 3 minutes. That was the most selfies taken in a short while, which was a world record. That record has since been broken.
20. Johnson’s stunt double is his cousin
Concluding our interesting Dwayne Johnson facts is The Rock’s helping hand when it comes to extreme stunts. For 15 years, Johnson has had a stunt double who bears a striking resemblance with him. Tanoai Reed, Johnson’s stuntman is also his distant cousin — they are both related to each other through their great-grandfather ancestry.