Updated 05:28 PM EDT, Tue, May 11, 2021

'Hercules' Actor The Rock Rooting For UFC Fighter Anthony 'Rumble' Johnson

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Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson is frequently at UFC events, watching modern-day warriors beat one another in the cage.

Just recently, he granted an interview with UFC 360, MMA Junkie said, with the Hollywood star telling the magazine how he wanted to give mixed martial arts a try but settled for a UFC supporter role instead. He also disclosed who he thinks will rule the UFC next year.

"I was always a fan of the UFC, dating back to UFC 1 in '93. But what actually drew me to MMA was when I attended UFC 60, when Matt Hughes faced Royce Gracie in a non-title catchweight fight," Johnson told the UFC interview. "I went home that night with such a greater respect for the sport and all its fighters." 

In two decades, Dwayne, who is now a household name, has made the rounds in football, professional wrestling and acting, UFC said, noting that his physical size increased over time--to the size that woud fit someone in the MMA. In the interview, he said he used to "hear that voice" telling him to fight in the octagon.

"Then I remembered I don't like getting punched in the face," he added in the Q&A, although he quickly said that he respected the MMA. That respect also goes to Brock Lesnar, who made the transition from WWE to UFC.

"[Lesnar] always knew I supported his decision," the actor said in the UFC interview, saying that Lesnar's success as a UFC heavyweight champion shortly after he shifted from WWE was "historic."  It was a short but memorable championship period, MMA Fighting added.

He also said in the interview that he was always eyeing champions in the heavyweight and light heavyweight divisions. Among those that caught his eyes are Cain Velasquez and Jon Jones. But there's another bet he's willing to make--for Anthony "Rumble" Johnson in 2015. "When he becomes champion, I'm gonna have to claim him as my cousin," he quipped. 

Ronda Rousey, who stars with him on "Fast & Furious 7," has strong drive to excel and good work ethic but when it comes to Rousey's possible fight against Gina Carano, who starred in the previous "Fast &Furious" installment, Dwayne doesn't want to take sides. He said: "That's like asking, 'Hey, Rock, which side of your handsome face do you like better, left or right?'"

His latest film project is "Hercules" and Variety's Scott Foundas has good words for the actor. He said: "'Hercules' strongest asset is surely Johnson, who continues to foster one of the most affable, guileless screen personas in movies today. Johnson may have been born with screen presence wired into his DNA, but he's gradually cultivated the skills of a canny actor who knows just how to play to the camera and whose brute physical prowess is cut with a sly self-awareness. More than anything else, it's he who gives this Hercules his human-sized soul."

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