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Source: Photo by Mike Marsland/Mike Marsland/WireImage

The Rock Faces Criticism After Announcing He'll Play Folklore Legend John Henry In New Film

By Vanessa Nix Anthony

Everyone from Paul Robeson and Harry Belfonte to Woody Gutherie and Johnny Cash and even Disney have  tried to tell the story of American Legend: John Henry—now, Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson is set to take a swing at it for Netflix, but folks online aren't too sure he's the right muscle for the job.

Johnson has been facing a backlash ever since he posted a teaser for his new Netflix Original movie, John Henry and the Statesmen, on Instagram on Tuesday and all before it ever hits your living room screens. 

View this post on Instagram

WHEN THE MAN COMES AROUND. Inspired to bring to life one of my childhood heroes, John Henry, in JOHN HENRY & THE STATESMEN. In this movie, I’ll lead an ensemble of the most popular folklore figures and legends from different cultures around the world. @NETFLIX is the perfect partner & platform to bring these global folklore icons to life. The NETFLIX brand speaks directly to our @sevenbucksprod ethos of being bold, ambitious and game changing - and most importantly, always thinking “Audience first” in homes all around the world. The legend of JOHN HENRY’S strength, endurance, dignity and cultural pride was instilled in my DNA at a very young age. My dad would sing “Big John” to me every time he would put me to bed. At bedtime most children get loving nursery rhyme songs — I got this/ Every mornin’ at the mine, you could see him arrive. He stood 6 foot 6 and weighed 245. Kind of broad at the shoulder and narrow at the hip. And everybody knew you didn’t give no lip to Big John. Big John. Big Bad John. Directing this big ol’ tentpole is the talented and passionate, Jake Kasdan. Jake and I found nice success together in a little movie called, JUMANJI. Gonna be a lot of fun bringing these legends to life. My childhood hero. The steel driving man and his disruptive band of international folklore legends. JOHN HENRY & THE STATESMEN @sevenbucksprod @danygarciaco @hhgarcia41 @flynnpictureco @NETFLIX

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The complaint? Apparently, Johnson is not "dark-skinned" enough for the role: