John Cena

© Anton
Wikimedia / CC BY-SA 2.0 ]
Now in cinemas

John Cena plays the role of Ferdinand (voice) in Ferdinand.

BornJohn Felix Anthony Cena
April 23, 1977 (age 40)
Profession Wrestler, Singer, Actor, Rapper, Musician, Bodybuilder
Spouse Elizabeth Huberdeau
Parents John Cena Sr., Carol Cena
Freebase ]

John Felix Anthony Cena (born April 23, 1977) is an American professional wrestler, rapper and actor signed to WWE. Cena is the public face of WWE, and has served as its franchise player since 2002.

Cena started his pro wrestling career in 1999 with Ultimate Pro Wrestling, where he held the UPW Heavyweight Championship. Cena signed a developmental contract with the World Wrestling Federation (WWF, later renamed to WWE) in 2001, debuting on the main roster in 2002. As of August 2015, Cena has won 23 championships, with a record 12 reigns as WWE (World Heavyweight) Champion, three reigns as World Heavyweight Champion, four reigns as WWE United States Champion, and a four-time world tag team champion (two World Tag Team and two WWE Tag Team). He also is a 2012 Money in the Bank ladder match winner, a two-time Royal Rumble winner (2008, 2013), and a three-time Superstar of the Year Slammy Award winner (2009, 2010, 2012).

He has the fourth-highest number of combined days as WWE World Heavyweight Champion, behind Bruno Sammartino, Bob Backlund, and Hulk Hogan. He has also headlined WWE's flagship event, WrestleMania, on five occasions (WrestleManias 22, 23, XXVII, XXVIII, and 29) over the course of his career.

Outside of wrestling, Cena has released the rap album You Can't See Me, which debuted at No.15 on the US Billboard 200 chart, and starred in the feature films The Marine (2006), 12 Rounds (2009), and Legendary (2010). Cena has also made appearances on television shows including Manhunt, Deal or No Deal, MADtv, Saturday Night Live, Punk'd, Psych, and Parks and Recreation. He was also a contestant on Fast Cars and Superstars: The Gillette Young Guns Celebrity Race, where he made it to the final round before being eliminated, placing third in the overall competition.

Cena is involved in numerous philanthropic causes; most notably with Make-A-Wish Foundation. Cena has granted the most wishes in Make-A-Wish history.

Early life

Cena was born on April 23, 1977 in West Newbury, Massachusetts, the son of Carol (née Lupien) and John Cena, Sr. He is the second oldest of five brothers: Dan, Matt, Steve, and Sean. His father is of Italian and Albanian descent and his mother is of French-Canadian and English origin. His maternal grandfather was baseball player Tony Lupien. After graduating from Cushing Academy, Cena attended Springfield College in Springfield, Massachusetts. In college he was a NCAA Division III All-American center on the college football team, wearing the number 54, which is still used on some of his WWE merchandise. He graduated from Springfield in 1998 with a degree in exercise physiology, after which he pursued a career in bodybuilding and worked as a driver for a limousine company.

Professional wrestling career

Ultimate Pro Wrestling (1999–2001)

Cena started training to become a professional wrestler in 1999 at Ultimate Pro Wrestling's California-based "Ultimate University" operated by Rick Bassman. Once he was placed into an in-ring role, Cena began using a semi-robotic character known as "The Prototype". Some of this period of his career was documented in the Discovery Channel program Inside Pro Wrestling School. While in UPW, Cena held the UPW Heavyweight title for just shy of a month in April 2000.

On October 10, 2000, while billed as The Prototype, Cena made his World Wrestling Federation debut on a WWF SmackDown taping in a dark match against Mikey Richardson, where he was defeated. He received another tryout on January 9, 2001 at a WWF SmackDown taping in Oakland, California, this time defeating Aaron Aguilera. Cena wrestled again in a dark match at WWF SmackDown tapings on March 13.

Through 2001, Cena would receive 4 more tryouts with the WWF as he wrestled multiple enhancement talent wrestlers in both WWF house shows and dark matches.

Through the early months of 2002, Cena constantly found himself on the losing side of the matches he wrestled in. Yet again wrestling in house shows and dark matches, losing to the likes of Shelton Benjamin and Tommy Dreamer, he had his televised debut against Kurt Angle on August 26 of that same year.

World Wrestling Federation/Entertainment/WWE

In 2001, Cena signed a developmental contract with the World Wrestling Federation (WWF, now WWE). He was assigned to its developmental territory Ohio Valley Wrestling (OVW). During his time there, Cena wrestled under the ring name "The Prototype". He held the OVW Heavyweight Championship for three months and the OVW Southern Tag Team Championship (with Rico Constantino) for two months.

Cena made his WWE television debut on the June 27, 2002 episode of SmackDown! by answering an open challenge by Kurt Angle. After declaring that he possessed "ruthless aggression", Cena gave Angle a hard fight and only lost by a pinning combination. After the match, Cena was congratulated by The Undertaker, Rikishi, Faarooq and Billy Kidman.

Following the near-win, Cena became a fan favorite and started feuding with Chris Jericho, defeating Jericho at Vengeance. In October, Cena and Billy Kidman took part in a tag team tournament to crown the first WWE Tag Team Champions of the SmackDown! brand, losing in the first round. The next week, Cena turned on and attacked Kidman, blaming him for their loss, becoming a villain for the first and only time in his career.

Rise to superstardom (2004–2005)

In early 2004, Cena participated in the Royal rumble match at the 2004 Royal Rumble, making it to the final six before being eliminated by Big Show and the Match being won by Chris Benoit. The Royal Rumble elimination led to a feud with Big Show, which Cena won the United States Championship from Big Show at WrestleMania XX. The reign ended almost four months later, when he was stripped of the belt on July 8 by Angle after he accidentally knocked him over, thus attacking an official. Cena won the championship back defeating Booker T in a best of five series that culminated at No Mercy, only to lose it to the débuting Carlito Caribbean Cool the next week. After the loss to Carlito, the duo began a feud, which resulted in Cena allegedly being stabbed in the kidney while at a Boston-area nightclub by Carlito's bodyguard, Jesús. This worked injury was used to keep Cena out of action for a month while Cena was filming The Marine. Immediately on his return in November, Cena won the United States Championship back from Carlito.

Cena took part in the 2005 Royal Rumble match, making it to the final two. Cena and Batista went over the top rope at the same time, ostensibly ending the match. The match was restarted in which Batista eliminated Cena to win. The next month, Cena defeated Kurt Angle to earn a spot in the SmackDown brand's WrestleMania 21 main event match, beginning a feud with WWE Champion John "Bradshaw" Layfield (JBL) and his Cabinet in the process. In the early stages of the feud, Cena lost his US belt to Cabinet member Orlando Jordan, Cena defeated JBL at WrestleMania winning the WWE Championship, giving Cena his first world championship. Cena then had a spinner WWE Championship belt made, while JBL took the original belt and claimed to still be WWE Champion, until Cena reclaimed the original belt in an "I Quit" match at Judgment Day.

Other media

Film

WWE Studios, a division of WWE which produces and finances motion pictures, produced Cena's first movie — The Marine, which was distributed theatrically by 20th Century Fox America beginning on October 13, 2006. In its first week, the film made approximately US$7 million at the United States box office. After ten weeks in theaters, the film grossed $18.7 million. Once the film was released on DVD, it fared better, making $30 million in rentals in the first twelve weeks.

Television

In 2001, between his training in Ultimate Pro Wrestling and Ohio Valley Wrestling, Cena was involved in the UPN produced reality show Manhunt. Cena portrayed Big Tim Kingman, leader of the group of bounty hunters who chased down the contestants who acted as fugitives. The show, however, was mired in controversy when it was alleged that the portions of the show were rigged to eliminate certain players, scenes were re-shot or staged to enhance drama and contestants read from scripts.

Cena was featured on the ABC reality series Fast Cars and Superstars: The Gillette Young Guns Celebrity Race, which aired in June 2007, making it to the final round before being eliminated on June 24, placing third in the competition overall.

Personal life

Cena writes left-handed. He is a fan of Japanese anime and has mentioned that his favorite anime movie is Fist of the North Star. He has also said he is a fan of the video game series Command & Conquer and noted that it was his favorite game. Cena is also a fan of the Boston Red Sox, Tampa Bay Rays, Los Angeles Dodgers, New England Patriots, Boston Celtics and English Premier League club Tottenham Hotspur. Cena collects muscle cars and has over 20, some of which are one-of-a-kind.

While promoting his 2009 film, 12 Rounds, Cena announced his engagement to his girlfriend Elizabeth Huberdeau. They were married on July 11, 2009. On May 1, 2012, Cena filed for divorce, which was finalized on July 18. In November 2012, TMZ reported that Cena is dating WWE Diva Nikki Bella.

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Filmography

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