Well, this is certainly strange. Michael Bay’s production company Platinum Dunes are currently in talks with John Cena to play Duke Nukem in an upcoming movie adaptation. Right now no director is onboard, but they are searching for the person to pen the script based on the popular video game character. Alongside Bay, the movie will be produced by Andrew Form and Brad Fuller.
This to me is utterly pure madness. I mean aside from being an accomplished professional wrestler and one of the Internet’s favorite memes, Cena has proven recently as a very capable actor thanks to turns in Trainwreck, Daddy’s Home 2, The Wall, and most recently, Ferdinand. Up next for him as we know is the Transformers spin-off, Bumblebee.
Now I really do like John Cena, but I am baffled. He actually seems perfect to play the part, but I always thought in a more parody since, given the history of Duke Nukem, I’m shocked this got greenlit. Duke Nukem himself is a parody of all manly, macho burly action heroes from primarily ’80s action films. Debuting back in 1991’s self-titled game, the character got popular and fast, but time really hasn’t been kind to Duke. The very public development hell that was Duke Nukem Forever led to a game that everyone across the board seemed to find incredible underwhelming and started to question the more questionable aspects of the game’s story and the character himself.
Let’s just say there used to be a time and place where Duke Nukem would fit well into the social conscious of pop culture, but this certainly is not that time nor place, and with the level of criticism people have for the franchise, some of them can be moved over towards criticising Bay as well. Perfect match?
Cena has the charm and the know-how that I believe he could make a character like Duke work, but I’m just not that into the idea. We’ll see where this goes.
What do you make of the news? Do you want this to happen? Do you still enjoy the Duke Nukem games? Let us know in the comments!