A Parisian wax museum, facing backlash for “whitewashing” a Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson statue, has announced plans to revamp the waxwork.
The wax figure of the former wrestler and current actor was revealed last week at the Musée Grévin, modeled after London’s Madame Tussauds. However, it was met with widespread mockery on social media and even criticized by the Fast and Furious star himself.
One user on X, previously known as Twitter, commented that The Rock had been whitewashed, while another compared the figure to Mr Clean. The Shade Room Instagram account referred to the figure as “lacking melanin.”
Johnson, who was born in California, is the child of a mother from Samoa and a father from Canada of Black descent.
On Sunday evening, he joined in on the criticism by sharing a video on his Instagram page featuring comedian James Andre Jefferson Jr expressing feeling “slightly offended” by the statue.
“It appears as though he is employed at H&R Block or a similar establishment… Is this how you all felt when The Little Mermaid was no longer available? I can empathize,” stated the comedian. “It seems as though Dwayne Johnson has never been exposed to sunlight… He appears to be a member of the royal family.”
Next to the video, Johnson stated, “I want to clarify that I will be having my team contact our associates at Grevin Museum in Paris, France in order to make necessary updates and enhancements to my wax figure, beginning with my skin tone.”
“When I visit Paris again, I will treat myself to a drink.”
On Instagram, Musée Grévin announced that they are currently enhancing their waxwork of 250 famous figures. They expressed appreciation for the feedback they received, stating it is highly valued by their artists.
The Musée Grévin recently revealed Johnson’s statue and noted on their website that sculptor Stéphane Barret faced numerous difficulties in creating it, having to rely solely on photographs and videos as reference materials.
The groups visited fitness centers with the goal of locating someone with similar physical proportions to The Rock. The museum stated that it took the artists 10 days of meticulous effort and extensive research to recreate the actor’s Samoan tattoos. Additionally, the statue’s eyes had to be redone three times to ensure that they were not too dark and did not make the star’s face appear too harsh, while still maintaining its warm appearance.