The Rock is “Not Without Hope!”

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After establishing himself as a big-budget action star, The Rock, Dwayne Johnson is reinventing himself as a serious actor. Johnson has signed on to star in the adaptation of the best-selling memoir Not Without Hope.

Based on the memoir by Nick Schuyler, the film follows four friends — Schuyler along with NFL players Marquis Cooper and Corey Smith, and Schuyler’s best friend, Will Bleakley, a former University of South Florida football player — who were on a fishing trip in the Gulf of Mexico when their boat capsized, stranding the four men at sea.

In the days that followed, the men fought to survive as they awaited to see if help would come. Johnson will play Schuyler in the movie.

Schuyler, a former football player now a personal trainer in Tampa, said “I’m humbled that Relativity was interested in paying tribute to Marquis, Corey and Will, and I was impressed with their vision for the film and how they wanted to honor how these guys lived and loved their families, friends and teammates.”

“Nick Schuyler’s book is extremely moving, and Relativity is proud to work with the Rock, Nick and the entire team on creating a movie that honors this powerful story,” said Robbie Brenner, president of production for Relativity.

Johnson has had a busy 2013 starring or appearing in four films (Snitch, G.I. Joe: Retaliation, Pain and Gain and Fast and Furious 6) with G.I. Joe and Fast & Furious 6 both grossing more than $400 million worldwide.

This latest role will be a departure for the former wrestler-turned-action-star and provides him an opportunity to show his range and will also allow him to reach audiences that are more intrigued by dramatic fare than big-budget action pics. Johnson was a former football player for the Miami Hurricanes in the 1990s and has a feeling for the type of brotherly bond football players build after years of playing together.

Johnson continues to say busy recently finishing filming Hercules and is currently shooting Fast & Furious 7 in Atlanta. He is also continuing his work on the second season of his TV reality show The Hero and soon will shoot the untitled HBO pilot about athletes in Miami that Mark Wahlberg is producing and Pete Berg is directing.

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