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Donnie Yen takes over Jet Li's xXx: The Return of Xander Cage role

02.16.2016

Vin Diesel will be returning to the franchise he left behind fourteen years ago when he reprises his role of the extreme sports athlete-turned secret agent Xander Cage in the upcoming XXX: THE RETURN OF XANDER CAGE. The sequel will be taking some influence from the hugely popular FAST & FURIOUS franchise and surround Vin Diesel with an ensemble of other extreme types as they face off against another team in a race to recover a mysterious weapon known as Pandora's Box. The leader of that other team was to be played by Jet Li, but a recent Facebook post by Vin Diesel led to some confusion as it listed Donnie Yen in Jet Li's role.

A press-release by Paramount and Revolution Studios today confirmed that Jet Li is out and Donnie Yen is in. Yen will play an "alpha-warrior" named Xiang who will go fist-to-fist with Xander Cage (Vin Diesel) in their search for the sinister doomsday weapon. XXX: THE RETURN OF XANDER CAGE producer Joe Roth said that "Donnie’s fighting skill and on-screen charisma make him a perfect foil for Vin, we are all excited to see these two great action stars go toe to toe." While it's a shame to see Jet Li depart, Donnie Yen is a great choice to replace him, and Paramount/Revolution is almost certainly counting on his star rising significantly higher once ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY is released.

A synopsis for XXX: THE RETURN OF XANDER CAGE:

The third explosive chapter of the blockbuster franchise that redefined the spy thriller finds extreme athlete turned government operative Xander Cage (Vin Diesel) coming out of self-imposed exile and on a collision course with deadly alpha warrior Xiang and his team in a race to recover a sinister and seemingly unstoppable weapon known as Pandora’s Box. Recruiting an all-new group of thrill-seeking cohorts, Xander finds himself enmeshed in a deadly conspiracy that points to collusion at the highest levels of world governments.

XXX: THE RETURN OF XANDER CAGE will likely be released in 2017.

Source: Paramount

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