It's testament to the enviable film career of Dwayne Johnson that there's no need to add 'The Rock' between his first and last name anymore.
The former WWE champ hasn’t so much risen through the ranks of Hollywood but powerbombed through it, avoiding the sort of typecasting which befalls most former wrestlers (i.e. goon #2 in straight-to-DVD action film) in favour of more leftfield options like an amnesiac boxer (Southland Tales) and gay bodyguard (Be Cool).
Lead man roles capitalising on his comic timing and strapping physique duly followed, of course, as did other unconventional supporting fare which has recently seen him balance the funny (Get Smart, The Other Guys) with more straight-faced fare like Pain & Gain and the Fast And The Furious franchise. It’s little wonder Forbes named him the second top grossing actor in the world, this week.
But now he’s back as the headline act, starring in Hercules, a 3D blockbuster telling the tale of his titular demigod protecting the King Of Thrace from a blood-thirsty warlord, and we sat down with the absurdly charming actor to talk about his latest film.
He also tells us about why he wouldn’t mind aping the Oscar-bait crash dieting antics of Matthew McConaughey and Christian Bale, confirms that he’s prepping to play a superhero (rumours are currently rife about a number of DC characters), and - this is where it gets a little weird - he helps us to come up with our own wrestling moniker, leading to all sorts of trash-talking.
Hercules is out from cinemas from Friday 25 July