John Cena ended up as a merman in Barbie because Fast X was filming across the street

This Ken is a former WWE champion.

John Cena revealed that a chance encounter with Barbie star and producer Margot Robbie landed him a role in the upcoming live-action film. "It was a happy accident," Cena said during a Monday morning appearance on Today.

The actor, who will again square off against the Fast & Furious family in the upcoming Fast X, said he pitched himself to Robbie, who was filming Barbie right across the street from Fast X, prior to his casting as a merman.

"I think Barbie and Fast X share a lot of parallels," Cena said. "Their cast list is amazing. The Barbie cast list is amazing. The Fast X cast list is amazing. It was a chance maybe to [say], 'Hey, would you guys be willing to have me if I could do something?'"

Cena said he told Robbie that he "will pretty much do whatever you guys need" and in turn, "they asked me if I wanted to be a merman, and I said, 'Yeah, sure,'" Cena said. (Singer Dua Lipa, who will soundtrack the movie, was previously unveiled as a mermaid Barbie in character posters shared by Warner Bros.)

"I haven't worked with Margot before," Cena added. "We literally randomly ran into each other as friends. Fast X was filming across the street from Barbie. And [she asked], 'Why don't you do Barbie?' I said, 'I've been trying!' And Margot makes a lot of the decisions for that and I said, 'Well, I'll do whatever you need.'"

Cena revealed earlier this week that his official audition wasn't nearly so successful. "I tried and got rejected," he said on SiriusXM's Pop Culture Spotlight with Jessica Shaw. "They were putting out open casting for the movie. I get it, I wasn't a piece for the puzzle."

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - MAY 15: John Cena attends a conversation with Josh Horowitz for "Fast X" at The 92nd Street Y, New York on May 15, 2023 in New York City. (Photo by Michael Loccisano/Getty Images)

Michael Loccisano/Getty John Cena

"I think a lot of times people think, 'Oh, he wouldn't do that,'" Cena said. "I don't think there are any small parts. A chance is a chance. An opportunity to show your skill or develop a new skill, that's fantastic. That's why I want to do all this stuff, so I think once they realized I would just be grateful to be involved, they were like, 'Yeah, you can do this.'"

Greta Gerwig directed the film, centered on Robbie's Barbie as she experiences an existential crisis in the candy-colored Barbie Land and embarks on a journey to the Real World. The movie, out July 21, also stars Ryan Gosling as the Ken to Robbie's Barbie, as well as Issa Rae, Simu Liu, Kate McKinnon, America Ferrera, and Ncuti Gatwa as various versions of Barbies and Kens. Will Ferrell, Michael Cera, and Emerald Fennell also star.

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