The Rock Slams Vin Diesel's ‘Fast and Furious’ Return Plea: 'Manipulation'
Not feeling heard. Dwayne Johnson is speaking out after Vin Diesel‘s recent plea for him to reprise his Fast and Furious role — and it is safe to say that the former wrestler is not impressed.
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“I was very surprised by Vin’s recent post,” Johnson, 49, revealed to CNN on Wednesday, December 29. “This past June, when Vin and I actually connected not over social media, I told him directly — and privately — that I would not be returning to the franchise. I was firm yet cordial with my words and said that I would always be supportive of the cast and always root for the franchise to be successful, but that there was no chance I would return. I privately spoke with my partners at Universal as well, all of whom were very supportive as they understand the problem.”
The Jumanji star then questioned why Diesel, 54, felt the need to make the request public, referring to it as “an example of his manipulation.”
“I didn’t like that he brought up his children in the post, as well as Paul Walker‘s death. Leave them out of it,” Johnson noted. “We had spoken months ago about this and came to a clear understanding. My goal all along was to end my amazing journey with this incredible Fast & Furious franchise with gratitude and grace.”
Although the Moana actor wasn’t thrilled by how “this public dialogue has muddied the waters,” he confirmed that there were no hard feelings between him and the rest of his former cast, adding, “Regardless, I’m confident in the Fast universe and its ability to consistently deliver for the audience, and I truly wish my former costars and crew members the best of luck and success in the next chapter.”
Johnson’s response comes one month after Diesel asked him to return as Luke Hobbs regardless of their personal issues.
“My little brother Dwayne… the time has come,” the Avengers star, who plays Dom Toretto in the movie franchise, wrote via Instagram in November. “The world awaits the finale of Fast 10.”
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While trying to mend fences with Johnson, Diesel mentioned his own kids in the post, saying, “As you know, my children refer to you as Uncle Dwayne in my house. There is not a holiday that goes by that they and you don’t send well wishes… but the time has come. Legacy awaits.”
The Saving Private Ryan star, who shares Hania, 13, Vincent, 11, and Pauline, 6, with longtime partner Paloma Jiménez, shocked viewers when he decided to address his feud with Johnson. The duo have previously made headlines after Johnson seemingly called out Diesel in 2016.
“Some [male costars] conduct themselves as stand up men and true professionals, while others don’t,” the Ballers alum captioned an Instagram post in August 2016 after five years of working with Diesel. “The ones that don’t are too chicken s–t to do anything about it anyway. Candy asses. When you watch this movie next April and it seems like I’m not acting in some of these scenes and my blood is legit boiling — you’re right.”
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Johnson later admitted that he had some regrets when it came to how he approached the situation.
“I shouldn’t have shared that,” he told Vanity Fair in October. “Because at the end of the day, that goes against my DNA. I don’t share things like that. And I take care of that kind of bulls—t away from the public. They don’t need to know that. That’s why I say it wasn’t my best day.”
The California native noted that he still meant what he said in the original post and claimed that members of the Fate of the Furious crew “quietly thanked” him for speaking out about Diesel at the time.
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