John Cena Suggests WWE No Longer Needs Him

Posted By James Walsh on 06/10/19


The Wrap recently spoke to John Cena on the Nickelodeon revival of Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader? He also addressed how WWE no longer needs him from a financial standpoint. Below are some highlights.

John Cena on the format for the revival: “On the original show, a lot of the stress was placed on the contestants’ shoulders. It was dramatic in terms of ‘will they win the big prize or not?’ There’s still big prize money — this is the biggest Nickelodeon has ever given away — but the show is about the kids. We have more kids and we’re not afraid to showcase their talents. The show is about creating a fun environment to see who they really are, and in the process, we really learn a few things and have fun. The adults can win up to $100,000 if they ace the fifth grade, which is very, very difficult. It is still a game show but even when the contestants reach a struggling point, everyone on the show has a great time.”

Cena on how the new show will be more positive overall: “Every time we hit a precipice of someone doing badly or getting a wrong answer, I stress that the show is not about right answers. It is about learning — and a lot of our learning is done through our failure, that is where a lot of our growth comes from. I’ve had moments in the show where a fifth grader will get a question wrong and I can see them thinking ‘I’ve let you all down.’ I tell them, ‘I bet you won’t forget it now.’ Learning sometimes is tough and you learn a lot through failure and from that uncomfortable place. That is a great message to send to kids and parents.”

Cena on WWE and how they don’t need him on a financial level anymore: “It doesn’t mean that my heart doesn’t lie with WWE, I’ve often said that if I’m doing something like this then it’s impossible to do something like that,” he said. “I’m older now, I just turned 42. I watch WWE on a regular basis and the talent is getting faster and more precise, and I’ve always been referred to as ‘unorthodox’ so I’m not exactly the most precise,” he added, stressing that the WWE is doing just fine without him. They don’t need me, I am grateful for everyone who says ‘we miss you,’ and there was a time when I could genuinely say from a financial standpoint that they needed me, that time is up.”

Cena on joining cast of Fast & Furious 9: “It is a tremendous, globally-successful franchise … it has been built around cars, which I love. I would be put around people that are better than me … I could really be a sponge and it’s a huge opportunity for growth. I always say that if you’re the smartest guy in the room then you’re in the wrong room. I would really love the chance and I promise that if I do get the chance, I will do my best.”

John Cena on rumors of him joining cast of Suicide Squad: “You have to get everything buttoned up before you can make it official, I don’t want to say anything … I will just say that if that opportunity presents itself, then I will be very grateful to take it.”