Dwayne Johnson credits the women in his life for shaping him | Entertainment
NEW YORK — Dwayne Johnson’s two youngest daughters, Jasmine and Tiana, love to play a game where they make him close his eyes. They go to the kitchen and pour the ingredients into a bowl.
“They get flour and water and I hear, ‘Where’s the oil?’ and I know what’s coming,” Johnson said. He squints to take a look and sees them approaching. “I’m like, ‘OK, I’m not going to watch.’ and then bam! It’s thrown over my head.
Johnson’s playful submission with his daughters contrasts with the persona introduced in his former career as a WWE superstar and now a successful actor known for films such as ‘The Scorpion King’, ‘The Fast and Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw” and “Jungle Cruise.” Despite his 6-foot-5 height and muscular physique, Johnson isn’t afraid to show his vulnerability and share the lessons he’s learned.
Some of these life lessons are part of the NBC series “Young Rock,” which begins its second season on Tuesday. The show follows a young Johnson through significant moments of his childhood, teenage years, and college. Johnson appears in every episode, setting up the stories in a 2032 presidential campaign interview (a nod to the constant rumors that he could one day run for president of the United States).
In her personal life, Johnson isn’t shy about admitting that women run the show. “I’m blessed to be surrounded by all the estrogen,” Johnson recently said on Zoom from his home in Hawaii. “I’m the only guy in the house, me and the dog.”
An only child, Johnson was raised primarily by his mother Ata Johnson. Although he also had a relationship with his father, the late professional wrestler Rocky Johnson, the actor credits his mother and grandmother for raising him, saying they “had a very clear agenda on how to raise myself and what lessons I should learn and what kind of integrity I should have as a little boy growing up.
“My grandmother, my mother. My first wife, Dany Garcia, who is now a longtime business partner, my wife today, Lauren, my three daughters continue to influence and teach me on a daily basis. Even my little ones. I have a 6-year-old and a 3-year-old, and when you’re open and docile, you’d be surprised as a man, how much your daughters will teach you,” he said.
Johnson often says he and his daughter Simone, now 20, “grew up together.”
“I’m a completely different man than I was 20 years ago,” he said. “I had a professional wrestling career that was on fire. The things that you thought were important and should be sweating maybe 10, 15 years ago are so meaningless, in fact. The most important things are literally right in front of you (like family.)”
In the second season of “Young Rock,” viewers will meet Arlyn Broche as Garcia. Johnson and Garcia separated in 2007. Garcia, a businesswoman with an extensive portfolio, manages Johnson’s career and is a co-founder of her production company, Seven Bucks Productions.
Johnson hopes Simone enjoys seeing her parents in a healthy and professional relationship, even though they are no longer a couple.
“It took a lot of work. It took years, actually, because you have to figure it out (expletively),” he laughed. “One of the most important things during the divorce process was, ‘We’re friends. The marriage didn’t work out. Our marriage not working was the best thing in many ways. It allowed her to meet the love of her life and me to meet the love of my life. Johnson says he and Garcia’s husband, David Rienzi, are “great friends.”
Johnson acknowledges that it also takes a special person, his wife Lauren, to be okay with her husband working with his ex-wife.
“It was all of us doing the work. It wasn’t just Dany and me. It was me and Lauren because we were a newbie couple. Lawrence is amazing. She embodies the two most important qualities, love and kindness.