May 12, 2006

“The Rock” is game for “Spy” franchise

By John Gaudiosi

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - When "Spy Hunter:
Nowhere to Run" ships to video stores in September, Dwayne "The
Rock" Johnson will become the first Hollywood action star to
step into the role of an original character for the video game
and its big-screen adaptation.

Johnson stars as U.S. superspy Alex Decker, providing his
voice, likeness and motion-captured performance for the Midway
Games release. Later this year, the former wrestler is signed
on to bring Decker to the big screen in John Woo's big-budget
Universal Pictures summer tentpole release for July 2007.

"Dwayne brings a physical aspect to the character, and that
led us to developing Alex Decker as a physical American James
Bond character," Midway Games chief marketing officer Steve
Allison said. "We incorporated his ass-kicking brutality and
sense of humor into this character."

Johnson said the Decker character never loses his sense of
humor, similar to Harrison Ford's Indiana Jones, even when the
stakes are high.

"Before actually making the movie, I was able to do the
motion-capture and do the voice work for the game, and it gave
me a small window of opportunity to become this character,"
Johnson said.

Adrian Askarieh, one of the film's producers, said the
timing for the franchise is perfect because the James Bond
films are moving toward realism, which opens the door for a new
spy franchise that offers over-the-top action.

Reuters/Hollywood Reporter