'Hobbs & Shaw': Furious & rival team-up

By Zhang Rui
0 Comment(s)Print E-mail China.org.cn, September 9, 2019
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A still from "Hobbs & Shaw" shows Luke Hobbs and Deckard Shaw working together to battle enemies. [Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures]

"I am the star in 'Hobbs and Shaw,' I am the only star," Dwayne Johnson said as he walked into the press room for an interview in Beijing on Aug. 6, crediting his eyebrow-raising charisma to the film while pushing away his rival's role of Deckard Shaw, played by Jason Statham, just like what he did in the movie, but he laughed later, "No, I'm only kidding. Uh, let's talk."

The two rivals and tough men in "The Fast and the Furious" franchise now unite in an unlikely alliance in their own film to dive deeper into their characters.

After eight films that have amassed more than $5 billion worldwide, the franchise now features its first stand-alone vehicle as Johnson and Statham reprise their roles as a hulking agent of America's Diplomatic Security Service (DSS) Luke Hobbs and Deckard Shaw, a lawless outcast and former British military elite operative.

Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham speak to China.org.cn in Beijing, Aug. 6, 2019. [Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures]

The duo first faced off in the 2015 hit "Furious 7," and has swapped smack talk and body blows as they've tried to take each other down. Asked why they made a film featuring Hobbs and Shaw, Johnson said at the China premiere on Aug. 5 that although the characters hate each other, their chemistry is strong, which makes for a good movie. Johnson added that the most fulfilling thing for him was to make the normally serious-face Statham laugh, which became his "evil pleasure."

Though maintaining his own arrogance and grace against Johnson, like what he did as the character in the film, Jason Statham told China.org.cn that Johnson plays his part so great. "He's -- he is Luke Hobbs. He embodies this character so well, and you know, I think he's great. I think we get to share this -- these two opposites, oil and water, we have to put them in the same bottle. I think it's a great dynamic for us to play on camera."

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