Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson has no shortage of action entrées derived from various sources on his proverbial plate. However, when it comes to next year’s Central Intelligence, the role in which The Rock must "know" was inspired by an unlikely source: a classic Tom Hanks comedy.
Posting a new Central Intelligence still on Instagram, Johnson also provided a bit of insight into his character, "Bob," describing him as an adult stuck in a childlike state of arrested development. It's something he compares to Tom Hank’s role in his 1988 breakthrough comedy, Big, as a child whose wish is answered when he wakes up in the body of grown adult. Yet, that comparison might be loose, at best, since he also apparently pairs his childlike eccentricities with an extremely high IQ and some deadly efficient skills as a contract killer for the C.I.A.
Clearly, just one look at Johnson’s character proves that he doesn’t need the Public Enemy shirt he’s sporting to "fight the power." The guns hanging off his shoulders seem to suffice. However, for all of Bob’s described quirkiness, with fanny packs full of condoms and Bruce Lee quotes, his current state as an assassin is the culmination of baggage from being bullied back in school by a jock who grew up (sort of) to be a mild-mannered accountant played by Kevin Hart. However, our accountant’s 9-5 normal world is about to get Rock-Bottomed several years later when the two are reunited days before a school reunion, when Bob’s espionage work intrudes.
Central Intelligence might, at first, seem to have the makings of yet another conventional comedic buddy-cop style dynamic duo movie that we’ve been seeing as of late regarding films teaming Kevin Hart with a unlikely partners, like the recent Get Hard with Will Ferrell and last year’s Ride Along with Ice Cube. However, for as little as we know of the basic plot, other than the twist of having Kevin Hart be the former bully of the freaking Rock, there does seem to be an emphasis over Johnson’s Bob character for which the actor seems especially proud. He certainly didn’t become one the most bankable stars in the movie biz by being one-dimensional, so expectations are going to be high on the memorability of Hanks-inspired "Bob."
Consequently, the comedic aspect of this actioner will not be restricted to just Johnson’s character. The film is directed by Rawsom Marshall Thurber, who directed We’re the Millers and its upcoming sequel, as well as the Ben Still/Vince Vaughn quotable classic, Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story. Of course, Johnson and Hart won’t be carrying the load on their disproportionately varied shoulders. Filling out the supporting cast are Amy Ryan, Danielle Nicolet, Ed Helms, and Aaron Paul. Plus, the film features a cameo role by Bobby Brown. Why? Because it’s their prerogative.
Central Intelligence does its best not to have classified information leak about what The Rock is cooking when it hits theaters on June 17, 2016.