Entertainment

My Interview With ‘The Rock’ Dwayne Johnson, Voice of ‘Maui’ in Disney’s MOANA

Disclosure: Disney sponsored travel, accommodations, and activities during my stay in Los Angeles.

I am back with another fun MOANA experience from my time in Los Angeles!

So far, I have shared my experience on the red carpet and 3 excellent reasons why you should see the movie.

My Interview With 'The Rock' Dwayne Johnson, Voice of 'Maui' in Disney's MOANA

Today, I’m sharing our interview with the one and only Dwayne Johnson, who voices “Maui” in Disney’s MOANA. 🌴

MOANA - (Pictured) Maui. ©2016 Disney. All Rights Reserved.

Maui. ©2016 Disney. All Rights Reserved.

ABOUT MOANA

Three thousand years ago, the greatest sailors in the world voyaged across the vast Pacific, discovering the many islands of Oceania. But then, for a millennium, their voyages stopped – and no one knows exactly why. From Walt Disney Animation Studios comes MOANA, a sweeping, CG-animated feature film about an adventurous teenager who sails out on a daring mission to save her people. During her journey, Moana (voice of Auli‘i Cravalho) meets the mighty demigod Maui (voice of Dwayne Johnson), who guides her in her quest to become a master wayfinder. Together, they sail across the open ocean on an action-packed voyage, encountering enormous monsters and impossible odds, and along the way, Moana fulfills the ancient quest of her ancestors and discovers the one thing she’s always sought: her own identity. Directed by the renowned filmmaking team of Ron Clements and John Musker (“The Little Mermaid,” “Aladdin,” “The Princess & the Frog”), produced by Osnat Shurer (“Lifted,” “One Man Band”), and featuring music by Lin-Manuel Miranda, Mark Mancina and Opetaia Foa‘i.

THE INTERVIEW

Why was it important for you to do this role?

DJ: “It was important for me to do the role because it was a great opportunity to showcase our Polynesian culture to the world. I’m half Samoan and half black, and it was an opportunity to showcase the culture that is very rich and we’re very proud of it.

An opportunity to work with Disney in this capacity — to hopefully make a movie that was not only good, but also a good shot at creating something that was a classic. That’s what I wanted to do.”

My Interview With 'The Rock' Dwayne Johnson, Voice of 'Maui' in Disney's MOANA

What do you want people to take away from this film?

DJ: “I think there’s a few messages that people can take away from the movie.  I also think that Disney did a tremendous job of representing our culture in a way that makes us proud, and first there was a little bit of hesitance, from all of us, but it was quickly quelled when I sat with John Lasseter and our filmmakers who had taken me through the process.  

By the time the script got to me, they’d already done years of research in going to all the different islands, and speaking with the high chiefs, and all the villages, trying to understand the cultures, which comes out in the authenticity in the writing.  

MOANA - (Pictured) Moana and Maui. ©2016 Disney. All Rights Reserved.

Moana and Maui. ©2016 Disney. All Rights Reserved.

So, the takeaway would showcasing our culture and seeing that there’s a wonderful quality of our culture and there’s a fierceness to our culture as well as tremendous pride.  

I think there’s a great takeaway that speaks to all cultures and religions We have this little voice inside of us, and to always make sure that we follow that voice, and listen to the voice – a gut intuition, and have that kind of faith, not necessarily a religious faith, but faith that there is more.  You can be more.  Kind of relevant today, right?”

Which accomplishment in your life would you like for that tattoo to represent?

DJ: “Being a being a father.”

What are you hoping children will take away from this film? (Amy’s question!)

DJ: That’s a good question. To have fun, number one, and enjoy it, and come away from the movie energetic and floating.  

I think when you accomplish that, it’s just such a cool thing, because it stays with us for life, even as we get older. So, to create magic like that for our kids and adults is awesome.

Demigod Maui (voice of Dwayne Johnson) is reluctant to help adventurous teenager Moana (voice of Auli‘i Cravalho), who is determined to become a master wayfinder and save her people. But Moana is destined to win him over with her charm, strength and unbridled spunk. Directed by Ron Clements and John Musker, produced by Osnat Shurer, and featuring music by Lin-Manuel Miranda, Mark Mancina and Opetaia Foa‘i, “Moana” sails into U.S. theaters on Nov. 23, 2016. ©2016 Disney. All Rights Reserved.

©2016 Disney. All Rights Reserved.

I also think having the confidence in yourself and that you are good enough. You can do this, and there’s a saying in Polynesian culture that’s like, ‘Don’t go beyond the reef.’  

We showcase that in the movie. Well, you can go beyond the reef.  And going back to listening to the little voice inside of you. Life is so noisy, so it’s important that we listen to our voice.

My Interview With 'The Rock' Dwayne Johnson, Voice of 'Maui' in Disney's MOANA

MOANA arrives in theatres everywhere on November 23rd!

Disclosure: Disney sponsored travel, accommodations, and activities during my stay in Los Angeles.