The Advice Dwayne Johnson Gave John David Washington Before He Went Off To Work With Christopher Nolan

John David Washington in Tenet

While a lot of people were first exposed to John David Washington, son of Denzel Washington, in Spike Lee’s 2018 joint Black KkKlansman, he actually had a regular presence on TV for nearly half a decade performing opposite Dwayne Johnson in the HBO series Ballers. So when Washington was preparing to go off to shoot his first blockbuster production, Christopher Nolan’s Tenet, Johnson provided him with some wise advice.

Considering how action-heavy his acting resume is, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is certainly someone who knows his way around a blockbuster, and here’s what John David Washington recalls the WWE star telling him:

Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson gave me some great advice before he sent me off to the grad school of Nolan. He said, ‘Make sure you eat and stay hydrated.’ He always was telling me to hydrate when we were shooting Ballers. I used to think it was funny, but I see what he means now. Hydration is key when it comes to that stuff, man.

Starring in a major motion picture is already a difficult job for an actor, but when it’s an action-heavy role once is playing, that ups the ante. So while John David Washington didn’t really heed Dwayne Johnson’s advice to hydrate while they worked together on Ballers, as the actor informed Total Film, he realized how necessary it really was to regularly drink water once he started working on Tenet. That’s one of the many lessons that’s hammered home to those who enroll in the grad school of Nolan.

So let that sink in for those of you who one day get to star in an action-heavy movie: keep a water bottle on hand. Dwayne Johnson’s been doing it for a while, and now John David Washington realizes how important that is. Washington didn’t comment on the eating portion of Johnson’s advice, but I assume staying well-fed wasn’t an issue on Tenet; no doubt a decent portion of the budget was allocated to craft services.

John David Washington appears in Tenet as a character simply known as The Protagonist, who, on behalf of a secret organization, works to prevent the start of World War III, with him learning about time inversion along the way. Washington’s co-stars include Robert Pattinson, Elizabeth Debicki, Kenneth Branagh, Dimple Kapadia, Michael Caine and Aaron Taylor-Johnson.

Although Tenet originally held on tightly to its July 17 release date, the current health crisis eventually resulted in the Christopher Nolan flick bouncing around the calendar. Tenet is now opening in 70 countries tomorrow, August 26, and it will play in select U.S. cities starting September 3 and expand domestically in the weeks to follow.

Looking to 2021 and beyond, John David Washington is attached to star in Born to Be Murdered and Malcolm & Marie. As for Dwayne Johnson, he’s gearing up to resume filming on Netflix’s Red Notice, and once that’s done, he’ll move on to Black Adam, which had a notable presence at this past weekend’s DC FanDome.

Keep checking back with CinemaBlend for more Tenet-related updates and other movie news, and browse through our 2020 release schedule to learn what’s supposed to hit theaters later this year.

Adam Holmes
Senior Content Producer

Connoisseur of Marvel, DC, Star Wars, John Wick, MonsterVerse and Doctor Who lore, Adam is a Senior Content Producer at CinemaBlend. He started working for the site back in late 2014 writing exclusively comic book movie and TV-related articles, and along with branching out into other genres, he also made the jump to editing. Along with his writing and editing duties, as well as interviewing creative talent from time to time, he also oversees the assignment of movie-related features. He graduated from the University of Oregon with a degree in Journalism, and he’s been sourced numerous times on Wikipedia. He's aware he looks like Harry Potter and Clark Kent.