It seems that if you're a former professional wrestler turned actor, all roads lead through the Fast & Furious franchise. When Dwayne Johnson debuted in Fast Five, that was arguably the film that began his ride to becoming the biggest movie star in the world. John Cena is now about to make his bow in the series when F9 comes out next month. But it turns out Dave Bautista also had a shot at joining Vin Diesel's franchise at one point. However, when presented with the opportunity, Big Dave wasn't that interested in talking about fast cars. He wanted to talk about chainsaw bayonets and the Gears of War series.
Dave Bautista has spoken before about pitching Warner Bros. himself about the idea of him playing Bane in the DC film universe, but that apparently wasn't the only time the actor pitched a studio on a role. Speaking with Collider, Bautista says that he once had a meeting with Universal where they pitched him on joining the Fast and Furious franchise, and he pitched them right back on the idea of playing Marcus Fenix in a film adaptation of the Gears of War video game series. According to Bautista....
I don’t make any pretense about it. I had a meeting with WB and I walked in and they were talking to me about this and that and I said ‘Hey, let’s talk about Bane.’ That happened to me one other time in my career. I had a meeting with Universal and they wanted to talk to me about Fast and the Furious. And I said ‘I’m not interested, let’s talk about Marcus Fenix.’
The Gears of War video game series focuses on a man named Marcus Fenix, a member of a military organization fighting a threat called the Locust that appear on an alien world that humans have colonized. Even outside of the full body armor the characters wear, Fenix is built like a brick wall, much like Dave Bautista himself, so it's not hard to see why fans would be interested in seeing him in the role. There have been rumors and reports at various points about the Gears of War series being adapted for film, but nothing has come of it yet.
Dave Bautista has previously mentioned that he had "tried everything" to try and get himself in a Gears of War movie and now we know that in this case "everything" means basically taking over a studio meeting to try and make it happen. Bautista admits that the times where he has diverted studio conversations like this, it hasn't always gone over well. But he feels he has to be honest with the studio about the work he really wants to do, and he knows that if he doesn't take the shot when he has it, then he'll never get the chance to do those things he's passionate about.
And who knows, it might still pay off. While there hasn't been much movement on a Gears of War movie in the past, if that ever does happen, the studio now knows one actor who wants the role, and it's hard to not agree he'd be perfect.