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As the writers’ and actors’ strike in Hollywood drags on, actor Dwayne Johnson, also known as “The Rock,” showed his support for fellow Hollywood professionals by making a “historic” donation to the SAG-AFTRA Foundation Relief Fund.
The 51-year-old “Black Adam” star made a significant payment to the non-profit organization, which is associated with the union but isn’t part of it, per Variety. The foundation is offering financial relief to many of the union’s 160,000 members during the strike. It has provided aid for union members in the past, including during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We rely on donations and grants to provide services — we have been very fortunate that we raised enough money to be able to cover all of our programs,” Foundation executive director Cyd Wilson told the outlet.
“But when we hit a crisis like this and we’re going to spend millions and millions of dollars in financial assistance, this is when we need our high profile talent who can afford it, who are in a situation to help others,” he said.
SAG-AFTRA Foundation president Courtney B. Vance also had words of praise for Johnson.
“It was a love fest. It’s like, ‘Man, you’re stepping up in a way that is allowing others to know the dire necessity of it,’” she said of the actor’s large donation. “This is him saying, ‘In such a time as this, I’m here and I’m not going anywhere, whatever you need me to do.’ And that sends a huge message to other folks to do the same thing.”
The exact amount of Johnson’s donation is being kept private, but Variety noted that the total donation was seven figures. “He stepped up in a major, historic way to help us because he’s one of us. We support our own,” Vance added.
Wilson told the outlet how grants typically deliver up to $1,500 per individual SAG-AFTRA member. This amount can go as high as $6,000 for members in extreme financial situations.
Vance said Johnson’s contribution will hopefully become a catalyst for others to give more to the foundation. “It is a call to arms for all of us to know that we just have to step up however you can,” the organization’s president said.
“If your step up is $10, step up. Because that $10 is going to help somebody. If it’s $10,000, if it’s $10 million, step up, because we have to. Everyone knows what happens when you go on strike, when you stand for something — as the saying goes, if you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for everything — you can’t stand unless you have support underneath you, on the side, up top and up front. So Dwayne is letting everyone know, ‘I’m here. What are you going to do?’”