Dwayne Johnson has had a rocky year compared to his box office surge in 2017. Perhaps the most disappointing film in his cap so far this year is “Skyscraper,” which felt like it should have been bigger. “Rampage” did better than expected, but still failed to gross $100 million domestically (although it got $99.3 mil). Still, in 2017 “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” was the 4th highest grossing movie of the year. “The Rock” can still be a draw, but with struggles between him and some critical reception, it’s been an interesting summer. However, it looks like Johnson is going to change things up thanks to Robert Zemeckis. Zemeckis will direct Johnson in “The King,” a biopic of King Kamehameha who united Hawaii under one flag.
According to Deadline, Zemeckis and Johnson have agreed to work on the project with Warner Brothers and New Line to produce and distribute. The auction for the rights ended yesterday for the film some in the industry have described as “Braveheart” in Hawaii. The concept gains some dose of truth because Randall Wallace, who received an Oscar nomination for writing “Braveheart,” will script “The King” for Zemeckis.
King Kamehameha is a legendary figure in the history of Hawaii. For generations, the islands of Hawaii were held by warring tribes and factions. Kamehameha was actually prophesized to united the islands, and he fulfilled that promise. He also began to bring attention to Hawaii as a haven for the European traders in the Pacific. Kamehameha united the islands under a single culture, and Hawaii has benefitted from his influence since the 1800s.
Johnson is obviously an interesting pick to play Kamehameha. He’s not normally a prestige actor. However, this film looks to be a prestige picture. With Zemeckis on board, there could be much more going on in the film. With the two bound to bring this story to life, time will tell if we get the film Kamehameha deserves.