Cancel Culture Officially Strikes Dwayne Johnson

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Dwayne Johnson wearing sunglasses

Credit: ABC

Cancel culture has officially reached iconic actor Dwayne Johnson.

Before entering the world of Hollywood, Johnson gained fame as a professional wrestler in the WWE, where he quickly became one of the sport’s most iconic figures. His wrestling career featured memorable moments, and he was a multiple-time WWE Champion, earning the respect of fans worldwide.

Dwayne Johnson as Spencer Strasmore in 'Ballers'
Credit: HBO

Transitioning from the wrestling ring to the big screen, Johnson embarked on an acting career that would solidify his status as a Hollywood heavyweight. Some of his most notable films include The Scorpion King (2002), where he made his debut as the lead, Fast Five (2011), Fast & Furious 6 (2013), Fast & Furious 7 (2015), Fast & Furious 8 (2017), where he portrayed the character Luke Hobbs. His contribution to the Fast & Furious franchise was pivotal, and he brought a unique energy to the series.

In addition to his roles in the Fast & Furious series, Johnson has starred in numerous other blockbuster hits, such as Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (2017) and its sequel Jumanji: The Next Level (2019), where he played Dr. Smolder Bravestone, San Andreas (2015), Rampage (2018), Skyscraper (2018), and Hobbs & Shaw (2019), a spinoff from the Fast & Furious franchise.

One of Johnson’s most impressive accomplishments is his ability to seamlessly transition between action-packed roles and more family-friendly films. For instance, he voiced the demigod Maui in Disney’s Moana (2016), which became a beloved animated classic.

Moana and Maui holding an oar
Credit: Disney

Johnson’s filmography also includes various other projects, and his on-screen presence and dedication to his craft have consistently earned him recognition and acclaim in the film industry. Apart from acting, Johnson has ventured into producing, with projects like the HBO series Ballers (2015-2019), where he also starred, and various film productions. His work ethic and commitment to his roles, both on and off the screen, have endeared him to fans and colleagues alike.

In addition to his entertainment career, Dwayne Johnson is known for his philanthropic efforts and motivational messages, inspiring people worldwide with his story of perseverance and hard work. However, those efforts haven’t come without some criticism, including a recent decision that has many fans wanting to cancel both him and iconic personality Oprah Winfrey.

Oprah Winfrey and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson have jointly committed $10 million towards relief efforts for the Maui wildfires that wreaked havoc during the summer. Despite their substantial contribution, the two prominent figures have found themselves under scrutiny, with questions raised about the adequacy of their support, alongside various conspiracy theories regarding their motivations.

dwayne johnson jason statham
Credit: Universal

Winfrey and Johnson unveiled their philanthropic initiative via social media on August 31. In an Instagram post that garnered more than 900,000 likes, they introduced the “Peoples Fund of Maui.” In the accompanying video, Winfrey emphasized their intention to directly assist those in immediate need by providing financial aid. The fund is designed to offer grants of up to $1,200 to Maui residents from the Lahaina and Kula regions who have suffered displacement or adverse impacts due to the wildfires. Both Winfrey and Johnson share personal connections to Maui, with Winfrey being a landowner with hundreds of acres on the island, and Johnson, who has Polynesian roots, spending his childhood in Hawaii.

Prior to their joint relief effort, Winfrey had already faced criticism for her substantial land acquisitions in Maui, totaling over 1,000 acres over the years. Some argue that these purchases have contributed to the rising property prices on the island, consequently pricing out many local residents. The devastation caused by the wildfires has further exacerbated the housing shortage issue.

Dwayne Johnson and Emily Blunt in 'Jungle Cruise'
Credit: Disney

Critics on social media, such as Twitter (now known as X), have not held back in expressing their discontent. One user wrote, “Straight Facts!!! Oprah & Rock are buggin’… bombastic side eye to them both.”

There are two types of billionaires in this world: — One is @elonmusk, who’s shipped over **650** Starlink internet kits to 40+ organizations across Maui in order to re-connect victims — The other is @Oprah, who’s funneling money into one of her organizations from middle class folks on social media I haven’t met a SINGLE person here on Maui that’s gotten a dime from Oprah, but I’ve met dozens that’ve benefiting TREMENDOUSLY from

@SpaceX’s internet connection. Is it too much to ask Oprah, who owns over 2,200 acres on Maui, to step up?! (* If anyone’s received anything from Oprah personally please let me know! I’d love to speak with you.)

A significant portion of the backlash stems from the fact that both celebrities possess a combined net worth approaching $3 billion, making their $10 million donation appear disproportionately small when viewed in relation to their overall wealth.

Since cancel culture is prevalent now, why are we not canceling OWN network or Dwayne Johnson? Asking the 1 % to donate to Hawaii when we are struggling to pay rent. Oprah could easily help them all with the land she bought.

While there is backlash being thrown at both Johnson and Winfrey, the two celebrities have maintained that they want to help with the devastation that has taken place in Hawaii and are continuing with efforts through the organizations set up to do so. While no status update has been given amid the backlash, we can expect that Johnson will continue forward with the relief fund and other efforts.

What do you think of Dwayne Johnson and Oprah Winfrey’s criticism? Let Inside the Magic know in the comments!

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