When The Rock first made the jump full time from WWE to Hollywood he was told that he would have to change a few things.
If you were to show most people footage of The Rock making his WWE debut all the way back in 1996, they probably wouldn't even believe that it's the same guy who is dominating the movie business in the present day. Back then Rocky hadn't even won over the WWE fans, nowadays though he has a global audience flocking to watch his movies.
For a while, it sort of felt like Rock was ashamed of his roots. It appeared like he was trying to drop the ring name that had made him famous in the first place and simply wanted to be known as Dwayne Johnson. An odd choice, especially considering his father and grandfather had been pro wrestlers before him so it was hard to believe that Rock wanted to leave that life behind completely.
As it turns out, it wasn't The Rock's idea to try and drop his nickname all those years ago. Entertainment Weekly gave us a sneak-peek into an upcoming episode of Off Script. During the episode, Rock tells Jamie Foxx how his management team and those he surrounded himself with when he first got into Hollywood told him that he should no longer go by his WWE name.
"I was told at that time, ‘Listen, you can’t talk about wrestling. You can’t go by ‘The Rock.’ You can’t be as big [physically]," Rock explained. That flew for a while, but clearly, and thankfully, it didn't last for long. Johnson still goes by the name The Rock if people want to call him that, and he is physically bigger now than he has ever been before. The Rock is the best version of himself and it's clearly working.
The Rock is currently promoting the release of his latest blockbuster, Skyscraper. He also let slip during an interview that he "can't wait" to return to a WWE ring. When exactly that will happen is anyone's guess though. As always, he has a very busy schedule and finding room for WWE may be tricky, no matter how much The People's Champ wants to return.