‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ taps WWE star Dave Bautista to play Drax

Marvel has officially found its Drax the Destroyer.

WWE star-turned-actor Dave Bautista has been cast as the green-skinned warrior in the studio’s James Gunn-directed “Guardians of the Galaxy,” making him the second actor to join the comic-book tentpole after Chris Pratt, who previously signed on for the role of Peter Quill/Star-Lord.

Drax is a being imbued with superhuman strength, flight, and the ability to emit cosmic energy blasts from his hands. Created by an entity known as Kronos using the spirit of a deceased human named Arthur Douglas, his sole purpose is to hunt down and kithe ll nihilistic supervillain Thanos (the character teased at the end of last summer’s “The Avengers”).

According to story-breaker The Hollywood Reporter, Bautista beat out actors including Jason Momoa, Isaiah Mustafa and Patrick Wade for the coveted role.

Bautista, who has been wrestling for more than a decade, only recently broke into acting with a guest-starring role on NBC’s “Chuck” and a part in last year’s “The Man with the Iron Fists.” He’ll next be seen in the Vin Diesel sequel “Riddick,” which is slated for release on September 6.

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