Dwayne Johnson has been getting pushback from some who believe he’s not black enough to take on the role of John Henry in the forthcoming Netflix film, John Henry and the Statesmen.

But Roger Aaron Browne, who played the role of John Henry in 1995's movie Tall Tale, believes, “There’s more to being black than meets the eye.” Brown told TMZ he doesn’t have an issue with Johnson stepping into the character for the Netflix folklore flick. In fact, Brown is a pretty big fan of Johnson, explaining that he offers everything the character needs.

“John Henry is an iconic character,” Browne explained in a video. “It’s been done several times, and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has paid his dues as an actor and as a human being. I happen to like the guy—and the one thing about his energy is the compassion along with the physical stature. These days that’s so needed and necessary.

“If Dwayne Johnson has enough moxy, enough guts, enough balls to put his money behind it, god bless him," he continued. "He simply has to be mindful about telling the truth to himself. He grew up, like he said, with his father, talking about this character, and that’s more than enough for me.... Who gave anybody the right to play god and say, ‘Dwayne, you’re not dark enough to play John Henry.’ That’s just ridiculous.”


In the new movie, Johnson will lead a reportedly diverse ensemble cast, and though there aren’t too many other details about this project, it’s being regarded as a big win for Netflix.