John Cena Officially Joins the Cast of Fast & Furious 9

The main Fast & Furious franchise just got a new boost of star power, and it's starting to look like Vin Diesel is compensating for the loss of Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson with news of this latest casting. With Johnson splitting off into his own spinoff series with Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw, Diesel found backup from another WWE crossover superstar.

A new report from Deadline indicates that John Cena has officially joined the cast of Fast & Furious 9, joining Diesel and the rest of the main cast for director Justin Lin's heralded return to the franchise. Cena is a major addition to the cast, replacing the losses of Johnson and his Hobbs & Shaw co-star Jason Statham in the main series of films.

While little news has been released about the upcoming film thus far, Fast & Furious 9 has already been dated for May 22, 2020, so filming will likely begin in the coming weeks.

Lin returns to the director's chair after helming Tokyo Drift, Fast & Furious, Fast Five, and Fast & Furious 6.

The report indicates that Johnson will not reprise his role as Luke Hobbs for Fast & Furious 9, but that Cena will likely fill that void. While details about his character are still under wraps, the report indicates that he will indeed be playing "a badass."

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Thank you Pablo.

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Aside from the departure of Johnson and (possibly) Statham, the film already suffered a minor setback when Michelle Rodriguez said she would not return unless they added more women to the writers room.

"My energy is completely directed toward the feminine right now and supporting women," Rodriguez said to Vanity Fair. "I’ve spent most of my life shooting guns, and hanging out with the boys, and watching them scratch their balls, and smelling protein-mixed farts. And now I’m feeling the poetry and the beauty and the sensuality of women, and the power we bring together. So they need to show more love to the women. I don’t know which direction it’s going to go. But I know that I’m headed in that direction. We’ll see if that all matches."

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A report revealed that the producers granted Rodriguez' wish, that a woman was added to the writing team for the next movie, and that she has confirmed her return to the franchise for Fast & Furious 9.

Fast & Furious 9 premieres on May 22, 2020.