John Cena's Tighty-Whitey Dance Scene In Peacemaker Was Filmed On Day One

The premiere of the HBO Max series "Peacemaker" features a scene that's impossible to forget, and it was also one of the first filmed. During a watch-along for the series on Twitter, writer and director James Gunn revealed that Peacemaker's tighty-whitey dance sequence towards the end of the first episode was shot on the first day of production, helping to set the tone for the rest of the remarkable and ridiculous shoot. The scene, which features Peacemaker (John Cena) really jamming out to The Quireboys song "I Don't Love You Anymore" in his nearly see-through Calvins, is one of the first moments where Peacemaker is sympathetic or relatable, so it was vital to get right. Thankfully, Cena's a professional, even in his skivvies. 

A Pants-Off Dance

After hooking up with a woman for the first time in four years (prison is rough, okay?), Peacemaker rifles through her collection of vinyl and puts on The Quireboys' record before putting on a lip sync performance for the ages. The moment is surprisingly sweet given just what a monster Peacemaker was in "The Suicide Squad," and Gunn himself was impressed by Cena's commitment to putting it all out there. In his tweet, Gunn said: 

I think we shot @JohnCena dancing in his underwear on THE FIRST DAY OF SHOOTING & I was like good God did I make a great choice for an actor to put my faith in! He came in & destroyed it, completely vulnerable & courageous. #peacemaker #PeacemakerParty

The "Peacemaker" series was kind of a gamble. Cena's funny in "The Suicide Squad," but many fans wondered if he would be able to carry an entire series on his beefy shoulders. "Peacemaker" is a complex redemption story that requires Cena to not only bare his body, but his soul. He gives Peacemaker, real name Christopher Smith, a kind of kicked-puppy pathos that's hard to hate. In "The Suicide Squad," the character constantly acted like a jerk because of his insecurity around Bloodsport (Idris Elba), his major competition among the squad. In "Peacemaker," he still does a bit of that, especially to poor John Economos (Steve Agee), but he's also capable of showing a much softer side. Whether he's singing and dancing in his undies, trying to figure out how to interact with other people, or having a total meltdown because no one likes him, Cena brings a kind of earnest authenticity to the role that's hard to deny. Here's hoping that his performance in "Peacemaker" blows open the doors on his career and we finally get to see Cena become the massive star he deserves to be. 

New episodes of "Peacemaker" premiere Thursdays on HBO Max.