John Cena has said he apologised to Dwayne Johnson after he previously criticised his career transition from the WWE into acting.
During a press conference for WWE Fastlane on Saturday (October 7), Cena was asked about the hypocrisy in his feud with Johnson between 2011 and 2013 when he returned to WWE after leaving to pursue an acting career.
Since then, Cena has made the same career switch, with roles in the Fast & Furious franchise and 2021’s The Suicide Squad.
“I went about it the wrong way,” Cena said at the conference in regards to the feud. “I violated his trust and I made allegations about his perspective that I knew nothing about.
“And deep down, I was a fan. I wanted The Rock back [in WWE]. I wanted to do anything to get The Rock back, but I did it the wrong way.”
He added: “I didn’t do it the respectful way, so I had to eat a little bit of crow. I had to say, ‘I’m sorry and I was wrong,’ because I am sorry and I was wrong, and that’s a very humbling experience. Dwayne is a hell of a guy… I became who I despised.
John Cena. CREDIT: Michael Loccisano/Getty Images
“I see that perspective and I understand it. It was a great learning experience from my mistake with feuding with The Rock.”
Cena decided to return to WWE for the Fastlane event due to the ongoing SAG-AFTRA strike in Hollywood, but he said he plans to return to acting once the strike is resolved.
“I made it perfectly clear you can’t do both because of the liability insurance,” Cena said. “If I were trying to juggle both that’s very selfish because I’d put a whole lot of people in the movie business out of work if something happened to me.”
Cena previously expressed regret over his feud with Johnson on the Happy Sad Confused podcast earlier this year, where he described himself as “selfish”.
“My view was, if you love something, be there everyday,” Cena said. “What a hypocrite I am, because I still love WWE and I can’t go all the time. And I just didn’t see that, I was so selfish.”
In the same interview, Cena said his friendship with Johnson is “in a really good place” now despite their past animosity – which led to two highly-publicised WrestleMania matches at the time.
“There was a moment where there was a lot of bad vibes between us, and rightfully so,” Cena said.
Along with starring in Fast X this year, Cena made a cameo appearance in Greta Gerwig’s Barbie and provided the voice of Rocksteady in animated film Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem.