The Scorpion King Sequels Missed Their Perfect Recasting In Dave Bautista

The Scorpion King 3: Battle For Redemption introduced Dave Bautista to the fantasy adventure franchise - where he really should have just played the title role. The Scorpion King franchise had a strange path to the big screen, with the character first appearing in 2001's The Mummy Returns. This blockbuster sequel marked the film debut of Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, who cameoed as Mathayus/the Scorpion King in the prologue before he later turns into a CGI monstrosity in the finale. Johnson's appearance was so well-received a spin-off adventure starring the character was soon put in development - making for a complicated Mummy franchise timeline.

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2002's The Scorpion King was a hit and launched Johnson's career, though he wouldn't fully break through as a leading man until the success of Fast Five in 2011. Johnson skipped out on 2008's The Scorpion King 2: Rise Of A Warrior, which holds the distinction of being a prequel to a spin-off of a sequel to a remake. The Scorpion King series continued for three more straight to DVD outings, coming to a close with 2018's Book of Souls, starring Zach McGowan. The original Scorpion King wasn't a great movie to start with, though Johnson's charisma and the production values made it an enjoyable adventure.

Related: The Mummy & Scorpion King Movies In Order (Release & Chronological)

The latter outings suffered from Johnson's absence, in addition to diminishing budgets giving them a chintzy feel. In the chronology of the saga, The Scorpion King 3: Battle For Redemption is a direct sequel to the Dwayne Johnson - who has made many Kevin Hart movies - original, with Victor Webster inheriting the title role. The story sees Mathayus going back to life as a mercenary after his kingdom falls apart and getting caught up in the battle between Talus, king of Egypt (Ron Perlman) and his evil brother Talus (Billy). The latter uses the Book Of The Dead to bring some powerful warriors back to life, including Dave Bautista's Agromael - who probably should have just played the lead.

Dave Bautista Played A Villain In Scorpion King 3

Dave Bautista as Argomael in The Scorpion King 3

The Scorpion King 3 was an early role for Bautista, who would later have his breakout as Drax in Guardians Of The Galaxy. The actor has rarely been offscreen since then, returning for various MCU outings in addition to other leading roles in the likes of Zack Snyder movie Army Of The Dead. Agromael is a supporting part, but Bautista steals every scene he appears in, and his star quality was already apparent. Webster is fine with the action sequences and he has the look required for the role, but it's not a very dynamic turn either.

Webster would later break the spin-off series' habit of recasting the title warrior when he reprised the role for The Scorpion King 4: Quest For Power in 2015. Dave Bautista was on the cusp of stardom when he appeared in the third movie, and The Scorpion King movies could have been a good training group for the former wrestler as he found his feet as an actor. The producers also would have been happy to have him in the lead following the reception he received as Guardians Of The Galaxy's Drax the Destroyer too, as the character would have provided another WWE legend with a launchpad to stardom. It's an interesting sliding doors moment for the series, which is set for a reboot to be produced by - but not starring - Johnson himself.

2022-08-14T16:57:14.000Z

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