Dave Bautista proved all of his critics wrong when he first starred in Marvel‘s galactic debut, Guardians of the Galaxy. Having previously been a professional wrestler, Bautista could have easily built a career similar to Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson (or even Rowdy Roddy Piper). And now he has confirmed he wanted to be completely different from the Rock.
Bautista recently revealed in an interview that his final outing with Marvel will be in this year’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3, once again playing Drax the Destroyer.
Speaking about his career progression, he confessed: “I’m so grateful for Drax. I love him. But there’s a relief (that it’s over). It wasn’t all pleasant. It was hard playing that role. The makeup process was beating me down.”
The 53-year-old told GQ Hype: “And I just don’t know if I want Drax to be my legacy – it’s a silly performance, and I want to do more dramatic stuff.”
Drax’s main characteristics are being shirtless, goofy, and strong – none of which really stretch out Bautista’s acting capabilities. And the American star knows this, as he pointed out he “never wanted to be the next Rock”.
Over the years, Dwayne Johnson has been involved in countless popcorn blockbuster movies that have been successful more often than not. From Jungle Cruise to The Scorpion King, the actor has built himself a brand of being a quirky, tough-but-soft macho man. Recently, he fought for DC Comics property Black Adam to be brought to the big screen, with Henry Cavill‘s version of Superman being brought back in the process. However, the movie was later deemed unsuccessful as it only earned $390 million at the box office.
Bautista said of his career: “I just want to be a good f***ing actor. A respected actor.”
The star noted that he doesn’t care about “being a movie star” or living a “glamorous life”. “I don’t care about fame,” he went on. “I just want to be a better actor. I want respect from my peers. I don’t need accolades – I really don’t, man. It’s about the experience, about knowing that I accomplished something.”
Bautista made similar comments last year while speaking with Express.co.uk about his Netflix movie, Army of the Dead.
Bautista told us: “Not being a lead [on Guardians of the Galaxy], not having anything to do with the production, I don’t have a lot of freedom. I’m kind of just there. I’m a hired actor, I’m told what to do, I’m directed what to do. There’s not a massive amount to contribute to the character. On the Marvel films I feel like I’m working for someone. I always feel like it’s still a job.”
He added: “The thing is, I’m so comfortable playing Drax. I’ve done so many films as Drax now. Drax is so fleshed out. I am so comfortable with him, I know who he is, I know who my cast-mates are, I know who their characters are, I know James [Gunn’s] directing style and what it’s going to be like.”
He laughed: “I’m in cruise control with Drax! I know him so well. I think, more than anything else, it’ll be back into that comfort zone with Drax. It’s that luxury. Once I get through that makeup which is always a nightmare for me!”
Last May, Bautista posted a photo of his last day on the set of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3. After having joined the series back in 2014, this year’s release marks the end of almost ten years of the star playing Drax.
He posted the photo with the heartfelt caption: “Haven’t found the words yet. It ended so suddenly and I was on to my next film before I could process it all. End of a journey that changed my life.”
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3 will hit cinemas on May 5, 2023.
Guardians of the Galaxy and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 are available on Disney Plus now.