Skyscraper displays Dwayne Johnson's vulnerable side

Skyscraper director Rawson Marshall Thurber wove all of his childhood ideas into the script for the upcoming action flick.

Skyscraper director Rawson Marshall Thurber was determined to tap into Dwayne Johnson's vulnerable side.

The wrestler-turned-actor is starring as former FBI agent and amputee Will Sawyer in the movie, with the plot seeing him become head of security of a building known as "The Pearl" in Hong Kong, only for the skyscraper to come under attack by terrorists, forcing him to take action.

While Dwayne is known for playing action heroes, having headlined flicks like Rampage and San Andreas, filmmaker Rawson wanted to show a different side of his personality in the project.

"I wanted to show Dwayne Johnson in a way that nobody had seen him before. Everybody knows he can pick up a dump truck and throw it through a brick wall - he can actually do that, by the way - but in most of his movies, he's bulletproof and there's not a lot of jeopardy," he told Total Film magazine. "When I sat down to talk to him about this, I said, 'I want this to be your most vulnerable role. I want people to actually worry about whether or not you'll survive.'"

Along with trying to find those responsible for the attack, Will is also tasked with rescuing his family who are trapped inside the building. When coming up with the character, Rawson talked to Dwayne about using Harrison Ford's performances in films such as Patriot Games and The Fugitive as a reference point.

"(I wanted) to see Dwayne as a thinking man's hero. You can't out-punch a giant building. It's a puzzle, you have to solve it and you have to use your wits. He was really excited about that. The one thing Dwayne loves more than anything is a challenge," the 43-year-old shared.

Rawson has previously helmed hits like DodgeBall: A True Underdog Story, We're the Millers and Central Intelligence. But making Skyscraper proved to be a dream come true.

"I got close on a couple of superhero movies but I was always a bridesmaid and never a bride, so I just thought, 'Screw it. I'll write my own damn action movie!' So I crammed all my eight-year-old boy ideas into one script," he smiled.

Skyscraper is due to hit cinemas from 12 July (18).

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