Wait, Is The Rock Playing Santa Claus In A New Christmas Movie?

Dwayne Johnson looking at Jason Statham in Hobbs and Shaw
(Image credit: Universal Pictures)

Earlier this year, mere weeks before Jungle Cruise hit theaters and Disney+ Premier Access, word came in that Dwayne Johnson is teaming with fellow Fast & Furious franchise contributor Chris Morgan for a Christmas action movie titled Red One. Johnson showing off his action chops in a yuletide setting is sure to catch a lot of eyes, but one question has lingered about this Morgan-penned project since it was first announced: is The Rock playing Santa Claus?

As it turns out, no, Dwayne Johnson will not be following in the footsteps of actors like Tim Allen, Ed Asner and Kurt Russell by putting his own spin on the man who delivers presents to kids all over the world for one night a year. This revelation came from producer Hiram Garcia, who co-runs Seven Bucks Productions with Johnson and wrote the treatment for Red One. Garcia cleared things up on the Santa Claus front to Slashfilm with the following:

It's funny, he's not playing Santa. For some reason, everyone thinks he's playing Santa. He's not playing Santa, but he's playing something really awesome. We're really excited about it. It's the movie we're looking to film next year. We're thrilled to have Jake Kasdan to direct it, because he is such a master in that space and the tone we're wanting to do. It is very much Hobbs and Shaw meets Guardians of the Galaxy meets Miracle on 34th Street. It's going to take holiday mythology and turn it on its head. Really, it's hard to find another Christmas movie to even compare to it. I don't think there's ever been anything done like this in that space, which is always very appealing to us.

Sorry to those of you who were were enticed by the idea of Dwayne Johnson donning the classic red suit and rocking a white beard. To be fair, Johnson could still play Santa Claus in a different project later in his career, but as far as Red One is concerned, that’s not his role in the action-packed proceedings. Who exactly is he playing? That information is being kept secret for now, but don’t discount the possibility that The Rock’s character could cross paths with Santa during the movie. The mention of “holiday mythology” has me thinking Red One could easily delve into fantasy territory.

As Hiram Garcia mentioned, Red One will be directed and produced by Jake Kasdan, who previolsy worked with Dwayne Johnson on Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle and Jumanji: The Next Level. The project is being housed at Amazon and has also been described as “imagining a whole new universe to explore within the holiday genre.” Red One will be Johnson’s second streaming-exclusive movie, with the first being Red Notice (no, these movies are not connected), which co-stars Ryan Reynolds and Gal Gadot, and hits Netflix this Friday, November 12.

Naturally we here at CinemaBlend will keep you apprised of how Red One is coming along as more information trickles in. Following Red Notice’s release, Dwayne Johnson’s 2022 will be DC Comics-tastic, as he’s voicing Krypto the Superdog in DC League of Super-Pets and playing Black Adam’s eponymous protagonist. You can also check out Johnson’s performance as Frank Wolff in Jungle Cruise on Disney+ for no extra charge starting Friday.

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.