‘xXx: The Return of Xander Cage’ to Start Filming This Month

     January 7, 2016

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xXx came out in 2002 and starred Vin Diesel, fresh off of The Fast and the Furious. Fast-forward 14 years, and xXx: The Return of Xander Cage is about to start filming with Diesel, who is fresh off of Furious 7. Though this is probably not the scenario many saw coming back then, it is indeed happening.

Diesel is returning to his role of Xander Cage for the third film in the franchise after not appearing in the sequel (hence the “Return of Xander Cage” in the title). The 2005 xXx: State of the Union featured Ice Cube, but didn’t go anywhere at the box office. And there’s no guarantee the third film will do much better, but given Diesel’s recent track record (or rather, road record), you can’t count it out yet quite yet.


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Image via Sony Pictures

After finally finding a director in D.J. Caruso, casting is underway with filming set to begin at the end of January, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Along with Diesel, Samuel L. Jackson is set to return to his role as Agent Augustus Eugene Gibbons, who is head of the National Security Agency. Joining Jackson and Diesel are Bollywood star Deepika Padukone (Chennai Express), Nina Dobrev (Vampire Diaries), and Ruby Rose (Orange Is the New Black). Padukone will play a “huntress” who has a history with Cage; Dobrev will play a “witty and sarcastic techie;” and Rose will be a sniper.

The first film served as an “anti-Bond” story and followed Diesel’s Xander Cage, an extreme sport athlete who is recruited by the government for a special mission. It grossed $142 million domestically. Cage was a one-man show in the first film, but having experienced the success of the ‘team’ model in the Fast & Furious franchise, Diesel will once again find himself surrounded with a team, as THR puts it, “of sexy badasses and comic relief players.”

Again, it’s safe to say not too many people were clamoring for another xXx movie other than Diesel. I guess if you count this and his commitment to the Riddick series, you can’t fault the guy’s passion. Also of note, Diesel didn’t appear in 2 Fast 2 Furious, so perhaps he has found a model where you start a franchise, skip the sequel, and return for the third entry onward to great success. We shall see.


Production set to start this month and will film in Toronto and the Phillipines. No release date has been set.

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