John Cena Praises Wife Shay Shariatzadeh as ‘the Brains Behind This Operation’ (Exclusive)


John Cena is fully embracing his better half. 

The actor stepped out with wife Shay Shariatzadeh on Friday for the Fast X premiere at the Colosseum in Rome, Italy, where he joked with ET that she was off “doing responsible things that keep me in line” while he hit the red carpet to chat with reporters. 

“Yes, yes, she’s the brains behind this operation,” he quipped to ET’s Nischelle Turner. 

The couple posed for photographers during the premiere, with Shariatzadeh stunning in a red mini dress with cape-style sleeves. For his part, Cena complemented the look with a maroon suit and plaid jacket. 

“We have a great movie for you guys and we know we have a great movie, but we just want to make sure you’re in a good mood going into the great movie,” he said of the over-the-top premiere experience. “You’ll be all hopped up on espresso and all sugar-rushed on gelato, and see the Colosseum and then see Fast 10.”

Cena said he indulged in pizza and pasta while visiting Italy, quipping, “It was very satisfying.” 

“These events are so fun and I think it’s much more fun when you make a date out of it,” he shared of bringing his wife along for the trip. “Sometimes it can get busy and sometimes you don’t get enough time for the ones you love.”

The couple quietly tied the knot in October 2020 and later celebrated their marriage with a larger event in July 2022. 

Elisabetta A. Villa/Getty Images

Cena also opened up to ET about the late Fast legend Paul Walker‘s daughter, Meadow Walker, joining the cast for a crucial cameo in the upcoming installment. 

“She did fantastic,” Cena gushed. “Anyone in that situation, she might have been a bit nervous and overwhelmed because, you know, cameras will be different — but she was great and, like, trying to do everything perfect and just found her rhythm and relaxed.” 

He continued, “I was honored to have that moment. That’s not lost on me.” 

The 24-year-old model-turned-actress spoke about the significance of the cameo, how the Fast family truly has become her family and how the role came about. On Thursday, Meadow on shared a photo of herself captured on a set monitor in a glimpse of her cameo in the Louis Leterrier-directed film.

“I’ve always thought about honoring my dad [in a Fast film] just because it’s such a big part of his life and my life,” Meadow told ET. “But I was waiting for the right moment. I wanted it to be something super small and simple that was almost like an Easter egg. Like, if you didn’t know who I was, you wouldn’t even notice it. I know that’s what my dad would want. My dad was always humble, very simple. I left my little mark and I can always share that with him.”

Fast X is in theaters on Friday. 


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