The Smashing Machine: Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson is Unrecognizable In A24 Biopic's First Look

The film tells the tale of legendary UFC fighter Mark Kerr.

Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson is tapping into his combat sports background for his next feature film. This past December, reports emerged that The Rock was set to star in a new A24 project entitled The Smashing Machine, a biopic that tells the tale of former UFC fighter Mark Kerr and his rise to the top of the mixed martial arts world while simultaneously dealing with the consequences of success. The Smashing Machine landed Uncut Gems director Benny Safdie to helm the project and also has had discussions with Emily Blunt, who previously worked with The Rock on 2021's Jungle Cruise, to co-star. 

Dwayne Johnson is Unrecognizable in New Biopic

(Photo: A24)

The Great One is completely transforming himself for his next project.

The Smashing Machine unveiled its first look image on social media, showcasing leading man Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson as MMA fighter Mark Kerr inside what is likely a PRIDE FC ring seated and talking to his fight camp in between rounds. Johnson is completely unrecognizable in the image, as his tribal tattoos are erased, he dons a short haircut, and even his facial structure appears altered. 

You can see The Smashing Machine's first look image below...

The Smashing Machine is set to take place in the year 2000, long before UFC became the global phenomenon that it is today. Kerr is a former two-time UFC Heavyweight Tournament Champion, World Vale Tudo Championship tournament winner, a PRIDE FC Heavyweight Champion, 1992 NCAA National Wrestling Champion, 1994 National Freestyle Champion and 4x ADCC World Submission Champion. His story was first told in a 2003 HBO documentary, also titled The Smashing Machine.

"Benny (Safdie) wants to create, and continues to push the envelope when it comes to stories that are raw and real, characters that are authentic and at times uncomfortable and arresting," The Rock said about the goal going into The Smashing Machine, which has been in development with his Seven Bucks Productions production company since he acquired the rights to the story in 2019. "I'm at a point in my career where I want to push myself in ways that I've not pushed myself in the past. I'm at a point in my career where I want to make films that matter, that explore a humanity and explore struggle [and] pain. I'm at this point in my career where I want more. And I don't mean I want more box office. I mean I want more humanity."

The Smashing Machine is currently in production and does not currently have a release date.