ACCOMPLISH SOMETHING SPECTACULAR, gain enough fame, or make a significant cultural contribution, and eventually you might earn the honour of being immortalised in wax. Athletes and politicians get statues dedicated to them, but the most celebrities can expect is a wax figure. So, if you’re lucky enough to lend your likeness to a wax replication, you would hope that its creators do a good job, wouldn’t you? Or, at the very least, you’d hope they get your skin tone right. Unfortunately wax makers frequently get it wrong, though few wax creations are as painfully inaccurate as Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson’s most recent likeness.
The Rock is one of the most recognisable actors in the world. The 51-year-old is the highest paid man in Hollywood and, since transitioning to the big screen after a stellar wrestling career, he has fronted some of the industry’s highest grossing films. With a résumé like that, you’d expect that just about everyone on the planet has seen The Rock’s face, but clearly, whoever made his latest waxwork is an exception.
We’ll give you a few seconds to take in all that’s wrong with the above figure, but it probably won’t even take that long to identify the issue at hand. Come on, that looks more like Mr Clean than The Rock. That waxwork is clearly a pasty white man—albeit an incredibly buff one—not the Rock we know and love. The figure has a considerably lighter skin tone than that of the Rock we’re accustomed to seeing, and barring some Polynesian tribal tattoos, there’s really nothing about the figure that indicates that the actor—who has an African-American father and Samoan mother—isn’t white. And that prompted his reaching out to get the figure updated.
“I’m going to have my team reach out to our friends at Grevin museum,” The Rock said on Instagram. “We can work at ‘updating’ my wax figure here with some important details and improvements—starting with my skin colour.”
Luckily, the Grevin museum has been quick to act. Just days after The Rock’s public request, and the ensuing social media outcry, the museum has updated the waxwork’s skin tone, apologising for the discrepancy and explaining how they could get it so wrong. “Unfortunately, we didn’t get to meet Dwayne Johnson so we used several photos,” said Veronique Berecz, Grevin’s head of public relations. “As it turns out, pictures can be very tricky because the nuances of skin tones can differ depending on the lighting on photos.” That may be true, but surely they took a step back upon completion and noticed something was amiss, right? Take a look at the updated waxwork below.
In response to accusations the museum was ‘whitewashing’ The Rock, Berecz was insistent, “This has nothing do with it — we just made an honest mistake based on the photos we looked at,” she said. “After we saw all these reactions on different blogs and social networks, we changed it immediately.”
The Rock isn’t the only A-lister who’s been subjected to a subpar waxwork replication. From the woefully erroneous to the borderline offensive, these are the most egregiously inaccurate celebrity wax figures.
What are the worst celebrity wax figures?
No explanation needed. Who is that?
Brad Pitt has never been a stranger to changing his style, debuting a number of short and long-haired looks over the years, coupled with alternating facial hair arrangements. The problem here is it’s difficult to tell exactly what period of Pitt the wax artist was trying to emulate.
Sure, this waxwork does look a lot like Justin Bieber. If Justin Bieber was a poorly rendered video game character, that is.
Take a long hard look at this wax figure and tell us with a straight face that it’s Justin Timberlake. We dare you.
We forgot to include the obligatory jump scare warning that should rightfully accompany this figure. You have our deepest apologies.
Ford looks more like an action figure than a person here. The guy’s mug is usually instantly recognisable, but not here. As Ford has been the face of multiple iconic franchises, perhaps the creator of this waxwork was working from memory.
This entire nativity scene
The first question that springs to mind upon viewing this ‘artwork’ is simply, why?
Why is Kylie Minogue an angel suspended in mid-air? Why are Victoria and David Beckham Joseph and Mary? What do Samuel L. Jackson and George W. Bush have to do with the birth of Jesus Christ? And finally, why does this abomination exist in the first place? That’s a question you’ll have to ask the London museum, who, for some unknown reason, rolled this scene out during Christmas of 2004.
Ok, this one is not a wax figure, but given the multitudes of this atrocity, we thought it was worth mentioning. We conclude this list with a statue of legendary footballer Cristiano Ronaldo, which was unveiled at the Madeira International Airport—in Ronaldo’s own hometown no less—to celebrate its renaming to Aeroporto Cristiano Ronaldo. Remember when we said some of these were borderline offensive? This is what we meant. And for a guy who values his looks as highly as Ronaldo, this statue likely keeps him up at night.