Dwayne Johnson is as big a movie star as really we’ve ever seen. It’s been a long time in the making and he didn’t take the most conventional path. But few other names ring out as loud as the dude we used to know simply as The Rock. So it’s always a little disappointing to hear that one of his films will be delayed, or might not even happen. This time it’s around the sequel to Hobbs & Shaw which might not happen because, of all things, Johnson is simply too busy.
Is it that surprising that Dwayne Johnson could have a movie delayed, or simply scrapped because he was overbooked? For any other actor, this would seem like lip service or a marketing ploy to drive interest. But for Johnson, it could be the truth. In an interview with Collider, Kelly McCormick, who produced the first Hobbs & Shaw, didn’t mince words about the status of the film
“Everybody’s really busy on that particular franchise. I mean, who’s busier than Dwayne Johnson? And, he’s critical to the project. We’re just waiting to hear, to be honest. I think it’s something that would be awesome to continue, but I think everybody’s just been so busy working on projects in the COVID of it all, that we’re still waiting to hear… There’s a lot of excitement to try to make something.”
This is pretty definitive, though no less disappointing, a statement from McCormick around the prospects of getting another Hobbs & Shaw in anything like the near future. And she lays it at the doorstep of Dwayne Johnson and his busy schedule. Of course, there are other concerns as well with pandemic-related delays and closures affecting almost the entire industry for about a year now. But the movie simply can’t happen if Johnson doesn’t have it in his schedule and, on that point, they are at the mercy of the star.
Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw came out in the summer of 2019. It was another massive hit for the franchise even if this spin-off was mostly just tangentially related through the titular characters. Starring Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham, the film raked in about $760 million at the box office on its $200 million budget. Critics were mostly on board with the ridiculous nature of the popcorn film, playing its action sets and dialogue right at the core audience of fans.
Technically, a Hobbs & Shaw sequel is greenlit through the studio and the creatives and leads have it on their timelines with Chris Morgan also returning to write the script and direct. It’s just the specific timing that’s in question. If it depends on Dwayne Johnson then we could be waiting quite a while.
That’s because Dwayne Johnson has a few years worth of movies already in the hopper that rival just about any other big name in Hollywood. He’s currently in post-production on two movies, Red Notice and Jungle Cruise. In the former he’ll team up with Ryan Reynolds and Gal Gadot for an art heist film and in the latter he’s on a demonic theme park ride with Emily Blunt.
But that’s not all for Dwayne Johnson. He’s also set to join the DC Universe in Black Adam in the titular character’s first foray onto the big screen. That will be in conjunction and will overlap with the Shazam! sequel. Plus he’s also announced a sequel to San Andreas, a Doc Savage film, and then a Big Trouble in Little China remake. See what I mean about this guy’s schedule. His card is booked for years. Hell, he might even run for President. So like McCormick said, Hobbs & Shaw depends on Dwayne Johnson and that isn’t looking like it’s going to happen anytime soon.