It’s a rather odd pairing — Cersei Lannister of Game of Thrones and Ed, the foul-mouthed slacker best friend of Shaun in Shaun of the Dead, playing British wrestling legends Sweet Saraya and Ricky Knight. But new reports suggest that Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has enlisted the services of Lena Headey and Nick Frost, who may likely be playing Paige’s parents in a WWE Studios movie based on her famous wrestling family’s story.
On Tuesday night, wrestling fans’ interests were piqued when Dwayne Johnson announced on his official Facebook page that his company, Seven Bucks Productions, will be teaming up with WWE Studios and Film 4 on a new film, Fighting with My Family, that’s apparently been about five years in the making. The film is based on the true story of one of British wrestling’s best-known families – the Knight family – whose youngest daughter Paige (a.k.a. Saraya-Jade Bevis in real life, or Britani Knight in the U.K. wrestling scene) is a former WWE Divas Champion and one of the company’s more recognizable female talents.
For those of you wondering what I'm working on... https://t.co/1M7qtlMdGx— Stephen Merchant (@StephenMerchant) February 7, 2017
The Hollywood Reporter offered a detailed synopsis of The Rock and Paige’s WWE Studios movie, which is inspired by the similarly titled and themed British documentary The Wrestlers: Fighting with My Family.
“(The film) tells the story of reformed gangster and former wrestler Ricky, his wife Julia, daughter Saraya and son Zak, who make a living performing in tiny venues across the country. Ricky and Julia want a better life for their children, and when brother and sister get the chance to audition for WWE it seems the family dream is coming true and all their troubles will be solved. However, Saraya and Zak are about to learn that becoming a WWE Superstar demands more than they ever imagined possible, both as athletes and siblings. Wrestling has always kept this family together — but now it could tear them apart.”
The Rock promised that casting announcements would be coming soon, and they did indeed arrive yesterday, albeit with little fanfare. According to Cageside Seats, English actors Florence Pugh and Jack Lowden were tabbed to play Paige and older brother Zak Zodiac respectively, and while both are up-and-coming young actors in their native country, neither name is too familiar with Western audiences.
A newer report from the same publication, however, suggests that Paige’s WWE co-produced film will feature two far more familiar actors from the U.K., presumably playing the roles of her parents Patrick Bevis and Julia Hamer-Bevis, or Ricky Knight and Sweet Saraya as they’re known to British wrestling fans.
Last night, The Rock confirmed in a tweet that Lena Headey and Nick Frost will be joining the cast of Fighting with My Family, and while he didn’t specify the roles both veteran actors will be playing, Cageside Seats wrote that they may be cast as Sweet Saraya and Ricky Knight respectively. Headey is best known for her roles as the evil Cersei Lannister in Game of Thrones and Queen Gorgo in the 300 series, while Frost had made his name starring alongside Simon Pegg in Edgar Wright’s “Cornetto Trilogy” — Shaun of the Dead (2004), Hot Fuzz (2007), and The World’s End (2013).
As previously announced, Fighting with My Family will be directed by The Office co-writer and director Stephen Merchant, and The Rock will also be starring as himself in a brief cameo, aside from producing the film. But even with that and Nick Frost’s recent casting in mind, the onetime “Most Electrifying Man in Sports Entertainment” has clearly stated that Paige’s WWE movie will be a “gritty drama biopic.”
Neither Dwayne Johnson nor Stephen Merchant have announced any specifics on when Fighting with My Family may begin shooting and when it is expected to premiere, but knowing The Rock and how busy he’s been hyping the movie, we may get those details sooner rather than later.
[Featured Image by WWE]