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Meet the woman behind Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson: Dany Garcia

Training and gaining pounds of muscle are not the only reasons Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson has reached the stature of a heroic Greek god.

From his WWE wrestling days to his transition as a leading man in the film, there has been a woman right alongside him, responsible for his transformation into a global powerhouse.

Cue, Dany Garcia, the ex-wife of Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson.

Though the two divorced in 2008, Garcia and Johnson have remained a team. Upon Johnson’s request, Garcia made the incredible move to manage The Rock’s career while continuing to raise their daughter, Simone, together.

Fast forward 8 years and Johnson became Hollywood’s highest paid actor in 2016.

Running parallel to Johnson’s success, Garcia founded and became the CEO of the media management firm Garcia Companies, in addition to co-founding the production company Seven Bucks Productions (that along with Johnson, represents stars such as Henry Cavill and Idris Elba).

What resulted was Garcia becoming a major media mogul in Hollywood.


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I enjoy this shot of our artfully tousled hair. @elardy @sevenbucksds @mrolympiallc @philipmmacias photography

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Garcia met Johnson during her undergraduate days at the University of Miami where she majored in international marketing and finance. She has been right alongside Johnson, supporting him through his multiple career transitions, from an aspiring professional football player, to star wrestler, and now actor/mogul.

In an interview with Marie Claire, Garcia relayed her numerous experiences in talking to agents and attorneys on behalf of Johnson, utilizing her educational background every step of the way to provide crucial financial guidance for The Rock.

While DJ is a huge presence, it is clear that Garcia has never been afraid to level up.  After college, Garcia built and established a successful career in the private sector where she rose to the title of Vice President at Merrill Lynch.

When Johnson made the move into acting and asked Garcia to join him, her skill set from the world of business and finance was highly translatable to Hollywood.


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So tasty, what’s your secret sauce? #flexfriday #secretsauce

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In the interview with Marie Claire, Garcia, however, recounted Johnson’s struggle in trying to navigate the roles that were offered to him. Garcia supported Johnson’s decision to no longer undergo dramatic physical transformations in order to fit into film roles, which he viewed as a compromise of who he was. She said to DJ,

“Let’s make Hollywood make room for you.”

And Hollywood has certainly made room for Dwayne Johnson. The Rock has led action blockbusters that have smashed box-office opening weekend records.

Garcia was always and continues to be inclined to look at every project through a business lens. She attributes The Rock’s success to adhering to the principle of every project and film having to align with the Dwayne Johnson enterprise.

Already having a wrestling fanbase, The Rock continues to expand his audience. From joining franchises such as Fast and the Furious, saving the state of California in San Andreas, to showcasing his charming, soft and comedic side in films like The Game Plan and The Tooth Fairy, and the recent remaking of Baywatch and Jumanji, The Rock has created a huge audience following.

Garcia emphasizes that these remakes do not simply reboot or tell the same story as their predecessors. Rather, she reassesses these films and imagines ways to continue the story and speculate what can be achieved through the new developments and advances in film technology.

Garcia has always been an innovator. Speaking to Marie Claire, Garcia notes how her upbringing instilled a drive in her to be successful and an insatiable commitment to take care of her family and others.

“My family came to America from Cuba: My mom came when she was 16 and my dad, he had to flee Cuba when he was 14, so he didn’t even finish high school. They met really young. They worked through school, but obviously, times were very, very tight for us. When I was younger, I always remember thinking, ‘I’m going to be a millionaire. I’m going to take care of them.’ I think that’s a great simplistic approach, and it drove me.”

With the family happy and taken care of financially, Garcia wants to extend this principle by choosing a type of storytelling that is far-reaching, she asserts,

“It has to have scope and size. If it doesn’t have scope and size—if it’s not going to impact people and make them happy, have global reach, move the needle—we won’t do it. We’re here for a short time. We try to do projects that are as big, as important, and as impactful as possible.”

Garcia’s media empire ultimately continues to expand and  Johnson and Garcia continue to collaborate. Seven Bucks have announced that they are partnering with Studio 71 to launch The Rock YouTube channel and are developing several series that will be produced by the company’s digital branch, Seven Bucks Digital Studios.