The ending of “Rampage,” in which a 40-foot albino silverback gorilla named George and several other oversize animals go on a rampage, was originally going to be a lot darker.
But since star Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson (who was also a producer) doesn’t like unhappy endings, the end was rewritten.
George was originally going to die while saving Johnson’s character from a vicious (and supersized) wolf.
Director Brad Peyton told USA Today that he thought it would be be a better movie if George went out a la King Kong: “I was definitely on that side, that it was more earned thematically that (George) would die.”
Eventually, Peyton was convinced to let George live: “It was like, how do you get to a place where you earn it, and not feel cheated when George comes back? And ultimately, you do want him to be alive.” Peyton told Rolling Stone that Johnson was “adamant” that George lives.
As Johnson points out that George dying heroically to save the world is noble. But … “But this is a movie! There’s a crocodile the size of a football stadium – we’re not making ‘Saving Private Ryan‘.”
And here are some “fun facts” about the film via Fresh Fiction:
- Johnson and the cast spent time with real wild animals to prep for the film — even an alligator!
“We consulted with the Dian Fossey Foundation for many, many months,” said Johnson. ” That was probably the best part. I had the opportunity to go to the Atlanta Zoo and spend time with the gorillas and their primatologist to understand their behaviors, their emotions, their nuances. That was an amazing process for me. I also spent a little time in the Everglades where I spent a little time with an alligator.”
- The Rock learned sign language for the film.
In the movie, Johnson’s character communicates with George via hand signals: “I had sign language consultants who were helping me,” Johnson revealed at the film’s junket.
- “True Blood” star Joe Manganiello joked about going from werewolf to wolf hunter.
“They used to bring giant wolves in for most of my scenes (on “True Blood”). I’m no stranger to working with wolves. Unfortunately, on this film… It went the other way. The wolves weren’t listening to me and doing what I said this time.”