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Is Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson Spread Too Thin?

April 16, 2018 | Posted by Steve Gustafson
Rampage The Rock Dwayne Johnson

The box office provided some surprises this past weekend when Dwayne Johnson’s Rampage barely beat out horror movie A Quiet Place to take the number one spot.

Estimates were off across the board as at one point it looked like A Quiet Place was retaining first place. Johnson’s Rampage didn’t quite meet expectations but was able to to rake in $34.5 million. With a budget of $120 million, the video game adaptation earned $114.1 million internationally, with a worldwide total of $148.6 million.

Jeff Goldstein, president of domestic distribution at Warner Bros.’ gave credit to the weekend’s numbers to Johnson’s star power. “Dwayne Johnson is a closer,” Goldstein said. “He’s got an incredible connection with his fanbase. He’s a global draw unlike anybody else today.”

Johnson is in high demand. A quick look at his projects give us:

Post-production on Skyscraper and Fighting With My Family

Pre-Production on Red Notice, Black Adam, and Jungle Cruise

Juggling the announced projects of Suicide Squad 2, Hobbs and Shaw, Big Trouble In Little China, Doc Savage, Jumanji 2, San Andreas 2, and The Janson Directive.

Oh, and he’s got a new season of Ballers on HBO.

That’s a full plate for the actor but is it too much?

In an interview with Yahoo! Movies, Johnson anticipates that the Black Adam movie is still happening and plans to go behind the cameras sometime in 2019.

‘The script came in, it’s great, we’re working on it. If things come together in the way we anticipate them coming together, that feels like a 2019 movie, in production. Marvel is doing such an incredible job of universe building and building out…and DC is doing a great job finding the footing and tone of their movies, certainly with like Wonder Woman, for example.

I look forward to James Wan’s movie that’s coming out, with Aquaman. So, Black Adam is this phenomenal opportunity for us to nail the tone, make sure that he’s badass, make sure that we’re serving the mythology properly, but then, also make sure that we can have intrinsic DNA tied to a lot of other properties in DC. So, it’s not an easy thing to do, but I think we’re going to nail it.”

On top of that, the Fast & Furious franchise is going in a new direction with Johnson. Deadpool 2 director David Leitch has officially signed on for the spin-off starring Johnson and Jason Statham, according to a report from EW. The spin-off will focus on Johnson and Statham’s respective characters Luke Hobbs and Deckard Shaw,

With so many projects, is Johnson doing harm to his brand? While’s he’s been able to weather the occasional bomb at the box office (See Baywatch), will audiences tire of seeing Johnson on the big screen? Rampage missed estimates but that can be due to a less than impressive marketing campaign and subject material that isn’t as engaging as his usual fare.

As his schedule lines up, we’ll be seeing Johnson regularly appearing in a theater near you. Will audiences embrace him or is too much of a good thing, too much to take?

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