In a time when war, poverty, sickness, and cruelty are mass-produced worldwide, we cling to our norms and the things that make us feel good. We use these refuges to escape the pressure and reality of life and our wild world. It’s a big reason Walt Disney World is such an alluring place. It’s also why superstars like Dwayne Johnson, viewed as one of the nicest people in Hollywood, possess such a devoted following of fans.
Sometimes, despite their best efforts, the road between social battles for equality, real-world issues, and so forth crosses paths with our safe places, and the recent wax statue release of Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has done just that.
Dwayne Johnson: The Hero We Don’t Deserve
Once known as Rocky Miavia during his stint alongside WWF icons like John Cena and Stone Cold Steve Austin, Dwayne Johnson has built an empire for himself. Making waves in theatres during his early film days as an action star in movies such as Walking Tall (2004) and The Rundown (2003), Johnson has since grown into a household name.
The Black Adam star has become a formidable force in Hollywood productions, working alongside popular talent such as friend Kevin Hart, Jack Black, Brendan Fraser, Emily Blunt, and more. In addition to his illustrious acting career, Dwayne Johnson has tried his hand at several different businesses, including the XFL American Football League, Teremana Tequila, and Seven Bucks Production Company.
Through his endeavors, the Jungle Cruise star has remained likable and lovable by fans, finding the balance between remaining humble and acknowledging his success. Evidence of unique fan interactions, hospitality, and general good nature have become synonymous with Dwayne Johnson’s name, helping establish his $800 million fortune and place among Hollywood elites.
Staying True to His Roots
Long before playing football for the University of Miami or wrestling in the then WWF, Dwayne Johnson was the child of Rocky and Ata Johnson. Rocky, a former pro wrestler, was of Black Nova Scotian heritage, while his mother was proud of her Samoan lineage.
The Black Adam star, true to his family history, totes both lineages proudly to this day, even starring in the 2016 Disney animated film Moana, in which he voiced Polynesian demi-god Maui. Also, if rumors are to be trusted, Johnson will return to the role during an upcoming live-action movie adaptation.
The Fast X star chose to follow in his father’s footsteps, taking on the traveling demand as a pro-wrestler, eventually making the leap into film, working on several successful products such as The Scorpion King (2002), San Andreas (2015), and Red Notice (2021). The Rock’s popularity would sore; however, despite amassing a fortune, he’d stay true to his humble beginnings.
Honoring Dwayne Johnson
The Jumanji star’s career has been sprinkled with accolades and accomplishments. The Rock won the People’s Choice Award for Favorite Movie in 2021 for your role in Disney’s Jungle Cruise. He also won the 2017 NAACP Image Award for Entertainer of the Year.
Most recently, Dwayne Johnson received a unique honor, becoming the new flagship attraction at Musée Grévin in Paris, where he was immortalized as an enormous wax statue. Capturing the likeness of many celebrities and persons famous in popular culture, the wax museum unveiled its Dwayne Johnson tribute last week; however, it didn’t go exactly as planned.
Confusion Strikes the Internet Over Dwayne Johnson Wax Statue
Although the gesture was nice, fans were quick to point out that The Black Adam star did not receive accurate representation. In fact, some even suggest that the museum got it completely wrong, possibly even confusing Dwayne Johnson with his Fast and the Furious co-star Vin Diesel. Take a look for yourself.
Le musée Grévin a dévoilé la statue de Dwayne Johnson. pic.twitter.com/4LyJrr51Xp
— Infos Séries (@SeriesUpdateFR) October 20, 2023
X, formerly Twitter, users set social media ablaze over one glaring issue with Dwayne Johnson’s statue. For those of you who somehow haven’t figured out the problem, Johnson isn’t white! Social media users were up-in-arms and loudly declared their dissatisfaction with what some call the “whitewashing” of Dwayne Johnson.
“It’s like the artist who was sculpting the wax statue of Dwayne Johnson had to leave out of sickness in the middle of it, and as a prank, they told his replacement that it was supposed to be a Vin Diesel statue,” joked a user on the platform.
“I didn’t know the Rock was white man.” said another X user.
Oh le whitewashing 😭
— Piccolo Damayonnaiz (@PiccoDamayonaiz) October 21, 2023
That’s not The Rock that’s The Pebble pic.twitter.com/VFzyNtaJqT
— 𝗔𝗽𝗼𝗹𝗹𝗼 (@apollovwrld) October 20, 2023
Although many took a comical approach to the statue, some felt that it was a form of “whitewashing,” the systematic and deliberate technique of removing “undesirable” characteristics about someone or something. Often, this technique has been used to purposely change the skin tones of famous characters. Another notable “whitewashed” character from history is Jesus.
Some even went as far as to call the statue “melanin deficient.” What do you think? Honest mistake or no?