Dwayne Johnson just has to shrug his impressively movable eyebrow and do whatever he wants. Okay, it takes a little more than that. But the muscular superstar now unites a power in his person that is unparalleled in Hollywood.
Dwayne Johnson had a decisive influence on the end of the monster-action pile-up Rampage, which would have looked very different without his assistance.
It now follows heavy spoilers at the end of Rampage, although experienced film buffs shouldn’t be too surprised by the details. But feel warned about this.
On Amazon: The original ending of Rampage with Dwayne Johnson
The real ending was Dwayne Johnson simply too sad. Short trip to the film. The giant monkey George is seriously injured in the fight against the other animal giants and apparently he also succumbs to his wounds. The film resolves the mourning scene with a gag: George only faked his death. He survives, everyone is happy.
Moviepilot meets Negan | The interview on Rampage
Now imagine the ending without the gag. George really should die. Johnson describes the scene as follows, and as you read it, you have to think a slightly indignant tone about it:
So we had this big meeting where they explained to me their reasons why George should die. He sacrifices himself to save the world. He kills the monsters whose goal it was to destroy humanity. He sacrifices himself like a brave soldier.
What Dwayne Johnson didn’t like at the end of Rampage
Johnson reacts to the end in astonishment, even a little annoyed.
The script arrives and I read it and in the end George dies! I like: ‘No. Did I skip something? George can’t just die.‘So I read it again and yes, he’s really dying.
Now, Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson is not a tender soul who is bursting with grief. Rather, it is more about its audience and the feelings with which it leaves the film. Because:
There’s already enough shit in life – I don’t want that in my films too. When the credits roll, I want to feel good.
My favorite quote from the tirade he gave the Rolling Stone entrusted in 2018 at the launch of Rampage:
We’re not filming Saving Private Ryan here.
In other words: There are sad films in which dear giant monkeys also die. And there are the ~ Dwayne Johnson films ~ as the actor himself explains:
My problem is that I’ve built a relationship with viewers around the world. I have built a trusting relationship with them over the years. They go to my films because they want to feel good.
Extreme measures: How Dwayne Johson “forced” the makers to make the changes
So Johnson feared that the world famous brand “Dwayne Johnson” could be harmed with too tragic an ending. The final of Rampage thus became a matter of principle. In order to decide their outcome in his favor, the actor was ready to go to extremes.
Rampage – International Trailer (English) HD
The end was set and it would take a long time for Johnson to achieve his goal. Producer Beau Flynn says: “Dwayne rarely interferes, but he was tough on that point. It went back and forth for about 2 months.“
The film could even have failed at this point, because Johnson threatened to leave:
Sometimes you just have to play that card and say it’s off if necessary have to look for another performer. We have to find a solution together or I won’t make this film.
Eventually, Johnson prevailed over the creative team and got his way, like you do today see at ProSieben can. A difficult moment for the director Brad Peyton and the four screenwriters. But Peyton, a long-time companion of Johnson, also admits:
He [Johnson] understands his audience and his relationship with better than anyone.
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Are you satisfied with the Dwayne Johnson ending of Rampage or would you have preferred to see the other version?