Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson has taken on many huge roles in his career, from Luke Hobbs to Hercules, but this new epic film could be his most personal. Johnson has been cast to play Hawaiian king Kamehameha in Warner Bros newly acquired film The King, according to Deadline.
The film, based on the real life legend, is being written by Braveheart screenwriter, Randall Wallace and directed by Robert Zemeckis, the man who helmed Forest Gump. It follows the life of Kamehameha, who was the first man to unite the warring islands of Hawaii, fulfilling a prophecy from his fabled birth.
As Deadline explains, the role has been a dream of Johnson’s since the infancy of his acting career. The Fast and Furious actor expressed interest in Kamehameha back when he was set to play the Scorpion King in The Mummy Returns. Years later he continued to think on the role, expressing its relationship with his own identity as Polynesian with roots in Samoa, New Zealand, and Hawaii.
Now as a superstar and one of Hollywood’s highest paid actors, he is getting the opportunity to step into his dream role, which he signed up for while filming Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle in Hawaii.
Producers behind the film wanted it to feel like a historical epic akin to Braveheart, which is why Wallace is in on the writing process. Not only is The King's production greenlit thanks to Warner Bros and New Line’s acquiring of the film, but a Hawaiian Kahu, or priest, held a ceremony blessing the project with Johnson and Wallace.
Johnson went on social media to celebrate the news. “Humbled & grateful to begin this once in a lifetime journey,” he wrote. "From the day I began my Hollywood career (2001), my dream was to bring this legacy to life."
Filming for The King is set to begin in 2020.