John Cena is reflecting on his WWE feud with Dwayne Johnson, admitting to being “short-sighted and selfish” in the situation.
On the May 18 episode of the Happy Sad Confused podcast, Cena said he “really messed up” by feuding with Johnson between 2011 and 2013 when he returned to WWE after leaving nearly a decade earlier to pursue a full-time acting career. Of course, now both Cena and Johnson are major Hollywood stars, with Cena playing the brother of Vin Diesel’s Dom Toretto in the newly-released “Fast X” and Johnson headlining the upcoming action-adventure film “Red One” alongside Chris Evans.
More from Variety
“I got selfish, and me living WWE at the point and not having any concept of growth or someone else’s perspective, I took Dwayne’s comments as not genuine,” Cena said. “My view was, if you love something, be there everyday. What a hypocrite I am, because I still love WWE and I can’t go all the time. And I just didn’t see that, I was so selfish.”
Their feud culminated in two highly-viewed WrestleMania matches in 2012 and 2013, with Johnson winning the first while Cena was victorious in the rematch. Though there’s no denying that the animosity between the two made for great TV, Cena has some regrets about how it all went down.
“I wanted a main event marquee match because it would better what I thought was the business. And that’s so short-sighted and selfish,” he said. “It worked, but it worked at the cost of two people who communicated and almost put it in jeopardy. And there was a moment where there was a lot of bad vibes between us, and rightfully so.”
However, the two have been able to form a strong friendship despite their former beef. “It was almost at the cost of our friendship, which I would like to say now is in a really good place,” Cena said.
Best of Variety
Sign up for Variety’s Newsletter. For the latest news, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.