Wednesday 17 January 2018

The Rock cements film star status

Dwayne Johnson at his Hand And Footprint Ceremony in Los Angeles (Invision/AP)
Dwayne Johnson at his Hand And Footprint Ceremony in Los Angeles (Invision/AP)

The Rock met cement when Dwayne Johnson's hands and footprints were immortalised in Hollywood today.

The wrestler, who is now a successful movie star, punched the air as he placed his hands and feet in wet cement in the forecourt of the TCL Chinese Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard.

Johnson, 43, enjoyed huge box office success when he joined the Fast and Furious franchise for the last two films and has put his huge frame to good use in movies such as Hercules, Pain & Gain and GI Joe: Retaliation.

Speaking after the ceremony, he said he needed to pause to appreciate what was happening.

"It's crazy, before this event I took a moment back at the hotel and kicked everybody out of the room, I just had to gather my thoughts and be incredibly grateful. It's very cool to be here with family, friends and business colleagues. I'm very lucky."

The 6ft 5in star will next be seen as a helicopter rescue pilot in disaster movie San Andreas, but he admitted he would not be much practical help in an emergency.

He joked: "I'm great in a crisis, I'm great because I can call 911 in a second."

Giving a speech to the cheering crowd before the ceremony, he said he has always known he would use his impressive physical form.

He said: "When I was eight years old I saw Raiders Of The Lost Ark. I walked out of that movie so inspired. I was such a big fan and I knew I wanted to be that guy, the guy who was charming with the ladies, who I thought was cool, a pretty tough guy but doing it with a smile, and the one thing I thought I could do at that time was be physical.

"I had my mum take me to the store to get some boxing gloves because I thought to be a tough guy you had to fight. She got me some boxing shorts and I made a whip at home to be like Indy."

He added: "Today is so symbolic because of what it means about hard work.

"Even at eight years old I thought I could do this, I could control my life with my hands.

"At 14 years old hard times befell us and we couldn't pay the rent, we had been evicted and our car repossessed and the one thing I knew how to do was work with my hands. That is what I did, anything I could do to change my life with my hands.

"Years later we are all here and my hands are being immortalised, my big-ass feet are being immortalised and I'm so proud of this moment and so grateful."

Producing a letter he recently received from Raiders Of The Lost Ark director Steven Spielberg from his pocket, he added: "A couple of weeks ago I received the greatest gift I could ever have received, out of the blue. This man, who has inspired me over the years, told me "You're going for it, just keep going for it."

"Steven Spielberg, this means the world to me. So cheers to always going for it and cheers to always putting in the hard work with your hands."

San Andreas is released in UK cinemas on May 28.

Press Association

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