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    Dwayne Johnson’s Transition To A Wrestling ‘Superstar’ In 1990s Was Layered By Constant “Jealousy” From Peers

    Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has seen the best of both worlds as he saw a meteoric rise from the rings of WWE to the glamorous Hollywood. But as admirable as it might seem, it was not at all an easy feat for the star. His way to stardom in both sports and acting arenas was filled with obstacles, and Johnson has braved them all to become the celebrity that he is today.

    As revealed in the Season 3 premiere of ‘WWE Rivals’ on A&E, it was not all rainbows and sunshine for Dwayne Johnson as he navigated his way to stardom. The recent episode of the show delves into the early days of Johnson’s wrestling career, where jealousy and animosity among his peers was a constant.

    Related: Henry Cavill Lost A Role In DCEU Because Dwayne Johnson Arrogantly Refused To Shoot One Iconic Scene

    Season 3 of ‘WWE Rivals’ Shed Light On “Jealousy” His Peers Had For Dwayne Johnson

    Dwayne Johnson (Credit: Getty)
    Dwayne Johnson (Credit: Getty)

    As Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson was ascending his way to the pinnacle of the professional wrestling world, his peers were not so happy with his progress. The star has opened up about the struggles he faced at the time on the third season of ‘WWE Rivals‘. The spotlight of WWE Rivals centered on the dynamic between Dwayne Johnson and Paul “Triple H” Levesque.

    This season of the show explores the heated rivalry between the two stars in the early 2000s over the World Championship. However, the bitterness between the two was not just for the cameras, it continued off the cameras too.

    Longtime WWE producer Bruce Prichard recalled how the two stars were always at loggerheads. “There was always competition between the two. There’s a reason you believed these two guys didn’t like each other: They didn’t,” he said.

    But it wasn’t just Levesque who envied Johnson. Several other wrestlers resented the success bestowed upon the third-generation wrestler by WWE’s top brass. Johnson’s debut at the Survivor Series ‘pay-per-view’ in 1996, where he pinned the veteran Levesque, immediately thrust him into the limelight.

    In case you missed it: Dwayne Johnson Explains The Reason Behind ‘The Smashing Machine’ Getting Delayed

    The Rock’s Peers And Audiences Tried To Bring Him Down, But He Emerged Victorious

    Dwayne Johnson (Credit: Getty)
    Dwayne Johnson (Credit: Getty)

    Johnson won his first WWE title of the Intercontinental Championship just three months later by defeating Levesque again. This further added fuel to the fire and intensified the discontent among his peers.

    The jealousy was  was quite visible, as Glenn Jacobs, known as “Kane” recalled. “I’ll tell you, when he first came in, there was some jealousy and people were like, ‘Why are they pushing this kid?’ He struggled with that,” he said of Johnson.

    He further added that the resentment wasn’t confined to the locker room. Several fans also turned against Johnson, and booed him as they chanted “Rocky sucks!” because of what they thought was WWE’s “overt promotion” of Johnson.

    Responding to the backlash, Johnson transformed his character into “The Rock” through a quick-witted trash talk that eventually won over the WWE audience. By November 1998, he claimed the first of his 10 world championships.

    Despite the initial jealousy and rivalry, Levesque admitted, “The first time I ever saw him, I’m just thinking, this guy’s going to be a star. He just had a look.”

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    Aishwarya is a Senior Sub-Editor at First Curiosity. Working as a news writer for over 3 years, she has written on an array of things for a couple of media houses in different capacities. With writing as her outlet, she is now exploring the world of art and glamour. She has previously been associated with ETV Bharat and India Today as part of national editorial teams. With a fair share of work done covering national and international issues, she is now navigating through her abilities in the field of films and art. A movie and TV show buff, Aishwarya at First Curiosity tries to bring forth what a layman's eye might easily miss out on. Her flair for words and ability to convey what's between the lines are her biggest strengths. Her love for films and writing stems from her fondness for words and all things artsy. An avid reader and writer alike, Aishwarya likes to delve into any and all forms of art. When not tapping on her keyboard churning out articles, she can be found staring at books or screens, trying to find stories that'll help her explore the world and its portrayal through art better.

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