Jet Li to Battle Vin Diesel in ‘xXx: The Return of Xander Cage’

     January 19, 2016

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The sequel seemingly willed into existence by Vin Diesel has found its antagonist. It was reported earlier this month that filming on xXx: The Return of Xander Cage would begin in the coming weeks, with a cast consisting of Samuel L. Jackson, Deepika Padukone (Chennai Express), Nina Dobrev (Vampire Diaries), and Ruby Rose (Orange is the New Black). Now, a famed action star has joined the cast.

Per THR, Jet Li is set to play a leader of a team that will face off against Diesel’s, highlighting the major difference between this film and the first xXx. Rather than being a lone action star, Diesel’s Xander Cage will have a team behind him made up of Jackson’s NSA chief, Padukone’s “huntress” who has a history with Cage, Dobrev’s techie, and Rose’s sniper. This team model seems to be a trick Diesel learned from the Fast & Furious franchise, and he hopes to repeat the results with this xXx reboot.


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Image via Lionsgate

While Li will have a competing team, it is unknown whether he will prove to be the film’s ultimate villain. THR also reveals that there were other actors in discussion to join the film, including Jennifer Lopez, but who ultimately passed due to scheduling conflicts or the inability to reach a deal.

Revolution Studios is attempting to get the most out of having xXx in it’s library, with the desire to have a success similar to the Fast & Furious franchise. And they must feel they have ground to stand on, as they are resurrecting a “franchise” that Diesel last appeared in 14 years ago. Accordingly, Revolution CEO Vince Totino promises “extreme action,” while the studio’s COO, Scott Hemming, promises “some of the most incredible stunts on film.”

The third film in the series will be directed by D.J. Caruso (Disturbia) with a script by F. Scott Frazier. Filming is set to begin in February in Toronto and the Dominican Republic. No release date has been set.

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Image via Sony Pictures


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