The actor addresses his “candy asses” Instagram post from 2016 — and the never-ending fallout.
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is breaking down his now-infamous feud with his former “Fast & Furious” co-star Vin Diesel.
In an interview with Vanity Fair for the publication’s November cover story, the actor opened up about his past beef with his co-star, explaining how the two are “philosophically different people.”
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Johnson, 49, and his “Fast & Furious” character, Luke Hobbs, first appeared in 2011’s “Fast Five.” He went on to reprise his role in “Fast & Furious 6” (2013), “Furious 7” (2015) and “The Fate of the Furious” (2017), before starring in the 2019 spinoff film, “Hobbs & Shaw.”
However, as it’s now known, there was a feud brewing between Johnson and Diesel, 54, behind the scenes, with the former only agreeing to star in the eighth film, “The Fate of the Furious,” if he didn’t have to shoot any scenes with Diesel. Johnson told Vanity Fair that he “wanted to forgo drama,” saying that he believed the decision “was the best thing to do” at the time.
But toward the end of the shoot for “The Fate of the Furious” in 2016, Johnson went on to famously blast at least one of his co-stars as “chicken s–t” and “candy asses” in a scathing social media post, which he later deleted.
“A candy ass is something you don’t want to be,” the “Jumani” star explained to Vanity Fair. “And the best way that I can describe a candy ass is: Life is so much easier, I have found, when you are not full of s—. And a candy ass is completely full of s—.”
As for why he shared the Instagram post at the time, Johnson said, “Nothing specific happened, just the same old s—. And that just wasn’t my best day.” While he said that he “meant” what he wrote, Johnson admitted that to “express it publicly was not the right thing to do.”
“It caused a firestorm. Yet interestingly enough…[it was] as if every single crew member found their way to me and either quietly thanked me or sent me a note,” he claimed. “But, yeah, it wasn’t my best day, sharing that. I shouldn’t have shared that. Because at the end of the day, that goes against my DNA. I don’t share things like that. And I take care of that kind of bulls— away from the public. They don’t need to know that. That’s why I say it wasn’t my best day.”
When asked about the face-to-face “peace meeting” the co-stars later allegedly had in Johnson’s trailer, the “Jungle Cruise” star confirmed that there “was a meeting.“ However, he said he wouldn’t describe it as a “peaceful” one, but rather a “meeting of clarity.”
“He and I had a good chat in my trailer, and it was out of that chat that it really became just crystal clear that we are two separate ends of the spectrum,” Johnson explained. “And agreed to leave it there.”
The “Rampage” actor went on to express that he and Diesel are “philosophically two different people” and “approach the business of moviemaking in two very different ways.”
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“It’s the philosophy of going into work every day,” Johnson said of his philosophy. “Looking at everybody as equal partners. And looking at the studio as equal partners. And looking at the crew, regardless of where you’re at, either on the call sheet or otherwise, as equal partners — with respect and with humility, and being respectful of the process and every other human being who is putting in just as much time, just as much hard work and sweat equity, if not more.”
Diesel, for his part, has shared his thoughts on his relationship with Johnson in the past. At one point, per Vanity Fair, the actor expressed that Johnson “has he only has one big brother in the film world, and that’s me.”
“I have one big brother and it’s my half brother. And that’s it,” Johnson told the outlet in response to that quote specifically.
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While speaking to Men’s Health back in June, Diesel also claimed that he gave Johnson “a lot of tough love” to get a better performance out of him for the “Fast & Furious” movies, suggesting that led to their feud. “That took a lot of work. We had to get there and sometimes, at that time, I could give a lot of tough love,” he said at the time. “Not Fellini-esque, but I would do anything I’d have to do in order to get performances in anything I’m producing.”
When the VF reporter brought that quote up again, Johnson started laughing.
“One part of me feels like there’s no way I would dignify any of that bulls— with an answer. But here’s the truth,” Johnson said. “I’ve been around the block a lot of times. Unlike him, I did not come from the world of theater. And, you know, I came up differently and was raised differently. And I came from a completely different culture and environment. And I go into every project giving it my all. And if I feel that there’s some things that need to be squared away and handled and taken care of, then I do it. And it’s just that simple.”
“So when I read that, just like everybody else, I laughed. I laughed hard. We all laughed,” he added. “And somewhere I’m sure Fellini is laughing too.”