- Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, a former wrestler-turned-actor, has made a triumphant return to the WWE after four years of retirement.
- Johnson started his career in wrestling and became a legendary figure, even winning the Intercontinental Championship in his first year.
- His surprise return to WWE SmackDown, where he embraced fellow wrestler John Cena, came as a complete surprise to viewers and was not advertised beforehand.
Four years after his retirement from professional wrestling, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is back in the WWE. Following in his family’s footsteps, Johnson, who is now a leading actor and a box office star, began his career as a wrestler after his football dreams ended. He fought in the WWE — then the World Wrestling Federation — from 1996 on and won the Intercontinental Championship just one year into his career. Already a legendary figure, Johnson spent years wrestling against international competition. He would only leave to pursue an acting career.
In the midst of the ongoing WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes, Johnson is returning home to the WWE. During WWE SmackDown, Johnson made his triumphant return. Check out the WWE’s videos of Johnson’s entrance below:
The Rock’s return came as a complete surprise, as the WWE only vaguely alluded to his potential appearance on WWE SmackDown.
After a proud entrance made greater by the cheering crowds, Johnson meets with John Cena, and the two wrestlers quickly embrace.
Why The Rock Is Returning To WWE
Since leaving wrestling, Johnson has become a major Hollywood actor. Johnson has starred in numerous movies, including Moana, Jumanji, and Fast Five. His role as Luke Hobbs in Fast & Furious has become integral to the franchise and has given Johnson the chance to star in the spin-off Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw. He has grown as a star considerably since he first threw The People’s Elbow in the WWE.
While no specific statement explains why Johnson has made his triumphant return, the SAG-AFTRA strike has likely left him with more time in his schedule. Unable to film any projects, sign on new movies, or promote his current works, he probably returned to the WWE for a brief stint. As the WWE is not a struck production, Johnson can still appear without violating the terms of the strike.
Johnson continues to support SAG-AFTRA, having donated to the SAG-AFTRA Foundation Relief Fund. That fund supports actors who may be in a financially unstable position in the wake of the strike, and Johnson reportedly donated over $1 million to the cause. This shows that he is not turning his back on the strikes by participating in SmackDown. Instead, he is simply taking an available opportunity to return to the WWE.