'Tough love': Fast & Furious star Vin Diesel explains feud with Dwayne Johnson
Diesel admitted that he would "do anything I’d have to do in order to get performances in anything I’m producing”.
It’s no secret that two of Hollywood's leading action stars, Vin Diesel and Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson, had a falling out several years ago, which first surfaced in 2016. They're both stars in the Fast & Furious franchise.
Johnson has spoken publicly about it and there’s even a since-deleted Instagram post in August 2016 where he wrote, "Some (male co-stars) conduct themselves as stand up men and true professionals, while others don't”.
Now Diesel, too, has shed more light on the feud, which he chalked up to "tough love", in an interview with Men’s Health that ran on Tuesday (Jun 22).
Diesel, who is also a producer on the franchise, said that he had to take a hard stance with Johnson while filming.
"My approach at the time was a lot of tough love to assist in getting that performance where it needed to be,” Diesel told Men’s Health. “As a producer to say, Okay, we're going to take Dwayne Johnson, who's associated with wrestling, and we're going to force this cinematic world, audience members, to regard his character as someone that they don't know – Hobbs hits you like a ton of bricks.”
Johnson joined the franchise in 2011’s Fast Five playing Luke Hobbs, which, according to Diesel, “was a tough character to embody”.
Diesel added that he was proud of the aesthetic that was achieved, but it took a lot of work to get there and he would “do anything I’d have to do in order to get performances in anything I’m producing”. He didn’t specify, though, the lengths he went to.
In 2018, Johnson told Rolling Stone magazine that he and Diesel “had a few discussions, including an important face-to-face in my trailer”. He said that conversation led him to realise that they had a “fundamental difference in philosophies on how we approach moviemaking and collaborating”.
Johnson next appeared in the 2019 spin-off Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw, which also starred Jason Statham.
Diesel stars in the latest installment of the franchise, F9, which opens in Singapore theatres on Jun 24.