John Cena Talks About How He Found Out He’d Be Playing Peacemaker Again For The Upcoming HBO Max Series

CinemaBlend participates in affiliate programs with various companies. We may earn a commission when you click on or make purchases via links.

John Cena made a bold impression on DCEU fans earlier this month when the actor starred as checkered antihero Peacemaker in James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad. The character looks valiant until he blurts out lines like “I cherish peace with all my heart. I don’t care how many men, women and children I need to kill to get it.” ...Excuse me? Who is this guy?

Thankfully, we’ll soon see Peacemaker return to the DCEU through an HBO Max series from James Gunn, which arrives early next year. But we’ll be honest here, the Peacemaker series sort of came out of left field, and the haste with which the show became a reality (it was announced ahead of the The Suicide Squad's theatrical release) is seriously impressive on James Gunn and John Cena's part.

CinemaBlend recently spoke to John Cena for his new Hulu comedy, Vacation Friends, and I asked the actor if he and James Gunn imagined returning to the character while working on the set of The Suicide Squad. Here’s what he told us:

No, certainly [The Suicide Squad] was my opportunity to be a superhero and I was grateful for it, and I really don’t craft opportunities beyond what I’m given. I got a call from James [Gunn] during the pandemic, he said ‘hey man, I wrote episodes for Peacemaker, you want to do it?’ And I said ‘Absolutely, yes,’ I didn’t think that would be a thing, but yeah sure let’s go.’

It was quite a gamble for James Gunn to start writing Peacemaker before reaching out to John Cena. Interestingly enough, The Suicide Squad writer/director once explained that he started writing it “mostly for fun,” before it legitimately came together as a full-fledged show. Still, it sounds like Cena was quickly sold after Gunn told him about it, even if he was caught a bit off guard by the fact that he'd be playing the role again… and so soon.

See more

The Peacemaker series will explore the origins of the Task Force X member along with his subsequent missions. T2’s Robert Patrick will be playing the father of John Cena’s Peacemaker alongside a cast that also includes Steve Agee, Danielle Brooks, Jennifer Holland and Chukwudi Iwuji. The show is expected to premiere on HBO Max in January 2022. If you'd like to sign up for the streaming service, you can using this link. The Suicide Squad is currently available to watch there until September 5.

John Cena’s latest project, Vacation Friends, sees the him playing Ron, one half of a wacky vacationer couple that also includes Meredith Hagner’s Kyla. Lil Rel Howery’s Marcus and his girlfriend, Yvonne Orji’s Emily, meet and then ditch them when returning home, but chaos ensues when Ron and Kyla travel to Marcus and Emily’s wedding uninvited. You can check it out on Hulu now.

Sarah El-Mahmoud
Staff Writer

Sarah El-Mahmoud has been with CinemaBlend since 2018 after graduating from Cal State Fullerton with a degree in Journalism. In college, she was the Managing Editor of the award-winning college paper, The Daily Titan, where she specialized in writing/editing long-form features, profiles and arts & entertainment coverage, including her first run-in with movie reporting, with a phone interview with Guillermo del Toro for Best Picture winner, The Shape of Water. Now she's into covering YA television and movies, and plenty of horror. Word webslinger. All her writing should be read in Sarah Connor’s Terminator 2 voice over.