Dwayne Johnson May Lift Weights for Michael Bay’s ‘Pain and Gain’

Dwayne The Rock Johnson

I don’t know which movie sounds weirder, a Michael Bay directed dark comedy or a Michael Bay directed movie that only has a budget of $20 million, but Variety is saying his next film, Pain and Gain, is going to be both of those things rolled into one. The movie is based on an article published in Miami New Times back in 1999 about a pair of bodybuilders responsible for a series of kidnapping and extortion plots. The script was penned by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, who describe it as having a tone similar to Fargo. So I guess you can throw that on the pile too: a Michael Bay directed movie that’s like Fargo.

Bay is one of the producers on the project as well, and ever since he’s gotten his hands on it he’s been looking at Dwayne Johnson and Mark Wahlberg to portray the two bodybuilders. Unfortunately, Wahlberg’s busy schedule has forced him to pass on the job, even though he’s been circling it for a while. Johnson, on the other hand, looks like he’s going to be able to fit the film into his upcoming events calendar. Pain and Gain is scheduled to start shooting this spring, which would give him a window to squeeze it in before he starts filming on the back-to-back sixth and seventh Fast and the Furious films.

With Wahlberg definitely out, that means Bay is going to have to find another beefy dude who could create some comedic chemistry when working with the Rock. The first name that pops into my mind is Vin Diesel, who is huge, looked great going nose to nose with Johnson in Fast Five, and probably has the same sort of schedule the Rock does due to Fast 6&7 shooting. But I just don’t know if Diesel can pull off comedy. Did anybody see The Pacifier? Yeah, didn’t think so. I guess that brings us back to square one. Beefy guy… needs to be funny… you know, Tom Hardy was pretty dang funny in Bronson. Just saying. [Variety]

Weaned on the genre films of the 80s. Reared by the independent movement of the 90s. Earned a BA for writing stuff in the 00s. Reviews current releases at

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