Black Adam Star The Rock Reportedly Only Returned To Wrestling Because Of Failing Hollywood Career

BLACK ADAM Star The Rock Reportedly Only Returned To Wrestling Because Of Failing Hollywood Career

After failing to take over the DCEU with Black Adam, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson returned to WWE earlier this year in what’s now being described as a move to deal with his struggling Hollywood career…

When Black Adam star Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson returned to WWE in January, most fans assumed it would be another one-off appearance from the Brahma Bull.

Those have been the norm in recent years, with it becoming apparent some time ago that he seemingly had no real plans to get back into the ring for a long-discussed match pitting him against cousin Roman Reigns. Given his continued Hollywood success, that wasn’t overly surprising and, ultimately, the movie business meant he had neither the time nor inclination to wrestle again.

However, the end of January saw The Rock join the board of TKO Holdings (WWE and UFC’s parent company) and regain the rights to his in-ring name. He also quickly returned to TV and took Cody Rhodes’ place in his WrestleMania match against Reigns.

Fans were incensed and #WeWantCody trended worldwide on social media for days. The Rock’s latest return to WWE also became the most disliked video they’ve ever posted to YouTube, a big deal when they’ve got over 101 million subscribers.

Creative plans had to change and Johnson turned heel (i.e. became a bad guy), leading to him and Reigns teaming up to battle Rhodes and Seth Rollins during WrestleMania Night 1. While he’s now returned to Hollywood to shoot an A24 movie – a departure from his usual big-budget fare – there are already plans for the “Final Boss” to step back into the ring.

However, based on a new report from industry insider Dave Meltzer (via, it seems the consensus within WWE is that The Rock did indeed return to pro wrestling because his Hollywood career was on the decline.

“I mean, there were definitely people in WWE who felt that his return to WWE this year was an attempt to turn around a losing streak, so to speak,” the historian and Wrestling Observer Newsletter scribe explains. “Young Rock got canceled. Some of his movies weren’t as successful as hoped for. WWE was an easy win.”

“But at the same time, they made him a $30 millions year offer to join the board of directors…he’s been talking about doing the match with Roman Reigns since 2019. He was never going to do it during the pandemic. He wasn’t gonna come back in 2020 in front of 20,000 people at WrestleMania.”

“And then, you know, he decided LA, not Dallas, and then LA came and he was busy,” Meltzer continues. “He made the move to not do Los Angeles and said, ‘Maybe I’ll do Philadelphia next year,’ but nobody believed it.”

The Rock has made tens of millions of dollars since returning to WWE, a sum he’d be unlikely to receive in Hollywood given the performance of recent blockbusters he’s starred in (such as 2022’s Black Adam).

Between pro wrestling – which he is, of course, taking credit for making “cool” again – and that aforementioned A24 movie, it’s clear Johnson is looking to reinvent himself as he enters a new stage of his career.

All action stars eventually age out of those roles and some deal with it better than others. In The Rock’s case, he attempted to build a DC Universe around himself, a move which failed and turned a great many fans against him.

Plus, reports like the one that surfaced earlier this week likely do little to help his planned image change…

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