Dwayne Johnson has surprised his mother with a house — anywhere she wants.
"This one felt good," the wrestler-turned-film star, 46, wrote on Instagram Saturday, alongside a video of his mother Ata opening a card and receiving the news. "Surprise! Bought my mom a new home for Christmas."
Johnson, who for the past three years has been either the world's highest or second highest paid actor on Forbes magazine's annual list, went on to recall, "All our lives growing up we lived in little apartments all across the country. Lived like gypsies on the road from one state to another.
"The first home my parents ever lived in was the one I bought for them in 1999." While Johnson's pro-wrestler father, Rocky Johnson, eventually was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame, most of his 1964-1991 career occurred before wrestling's big-money days.
"They divorced about 5yrs later," Dwayne Johnson continued, though contemporaneous reports put the finalization of his parents' divorce in early 2003, "and as with life, stuff happens and things got a little complicated. Since then I always made sure my mom and dad have everything they'll ever need — houses, cars etc. But the house this time is a special one and the timing is very meaningful. I told her to treat this card like it's 'Willy Wonka's Golden Ticket' because she gets to choose any home she wants — anywhere she wants."
In the video, Ata Johnson sits in a room with a Christmas tree and reads from a card: "We love you, mom, and Merry Christmas. This Willy Wonka Golden Ticket is good for — 12-18?" she says in confusion, perhaps referring to the date of the card, before opening it and beginning to cry tears of joy. She then completes the sentence: "…a brand new home." Moments later, she tells granddaughter Jasmine, 3, the first of Dwayne Johnson's two children with girlfriend Lauren Hashian, "Look! Guess what? I get a brand-new house!"
"I always say, if you got a good mama, then you gotta pretty good shot at becoming a decent human being," Dwayne Johnson wrote on his Instagram post. "And somehow, somewhere along the line I became one lucky SOB to be able to make stuff like this happen. Merry Christmas Ma and WOOOHOOO enjoy your new home."