“Hail to the king, baby!” as Duke Nukem (or Ash Williams from Evil Dead) might say.
According to a recent interview on CinemaBlend with producers Andrew Form and Brad Fuller of the production company Platinum Dunes, WWE superstar John Cena is confirmed to be attached to the lead role in their upcoming film adaption of Duke Nukem.
In Form’s own words to CinemaBlend when asked about rumors of Cena’s attachment, he was cautious but confirmed that “Yeah, that’s what we’re working with now. He is. Yes. We don’t have a script yet, so that is confirmed at this point but if he reads the script and he doesn’t like the script I’m sure there’s ways that he could pull out, but right now he’s our guy.”
So while a script has yet to be produced, the production company is going ahead with their plans for the movie based on the series of controversial Duke Nukem shooter/platform games which are known for their violent and explicit content, as well as their hyper-masculine, extremely politically incorrect protagonist. When Duke isn’t getting into some risqué situations in game, shooting up aliens, or trying to just save the world and get on with his life, he’s typically making wise-cracks about pop culture.
While critical reviews for the entire video game series as a whole are a mixed bag, Duke Nukem is a cult classic and in the hands of a company that may be well-suited to handle its blend of crude humor, campy violence, and potential horror. Platinum Dunes is responsible for the upcoming horror film, “A Quiet Place”, as well as The Purge franchise and the recent reboots of other franchises such as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, A Nightmare on Elm Street, and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre.
John Cena is a 16-time WWE Champion, who has appeared in films such as Blockers, Ferdinand, and WWE Studio’s The Marine. The production company Platinum Dunes originally specialized in horror films before expanding into the action genre. The venture is also tied to the upcoming Transformers prequel spinoff “Bumblebee: The Movie”, which also lists John Cena as a member of its lead cast. While John Cena’s foray into the realm of acting isn’t as extensive as Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson’s, Cena is similarly known in WWE circles for his cutting promos aside from his dominance in the ring. The Rock has also appeared in movie adaptations of video games such as “Doom” and the upcoming and anticipated release of “Rampage”. So while these adaptations tend to have mixed, if not dubious feedback, WWE performers are no strangers to trying to blend the worlds of movies and gaming. As Form stated, we are awaiting a script, and while Cena may be a great fit for the role on paper, things are still subject to change at this time.
Photos by WWE