With xXx: Return of Xander Cage set to release soon, predicting how successful the film will be is a little difficult. While star Vin Diesel has found quite a bit of success with both Guardians of the Galaxy and the Fast and the Furious franchise, he hasn’t exactly starred in many box office hits that bank on the Diesel name since 2005’s The Pacifier. Still, the first xXx (and the only other film in the franchise to star Diesel) was quite a success on its own back in 2002, grossing $277 million worldwide. While the sequel xXx: State of the Union, which saw Ice Cube taking over the lead, failed to resonate with fans and critics, there’s still enough potential fan interest in Diesel’s return after nearly 15 years to predict healthy box office returns.
With such a gambit taken by Paramount in resurrecting a series that hasn’t produced a film in over 10 years, it’s easy to believe that they would wait and see how well xXx: Return of Xander Cage is received before green lighting any future releases. Based on some recent words by star Diesel, however, Paramount may be interested in getting a fourth film started a lot sooner than expected.
As reported by Variety, Diesel revealed that Paramount has already contacted him about returning for a fourth film, even going so far as asking him if he and other cast members would be willing to get to work sometime in May. Diesel jokingly responded that they’re all a little tied up in interviews at the moment. For a full account of Diesel’s thoughts on the future of the xXx franchise, read below:
“I was in the middle of an interview and Brad Grey — who runs Paramount — calls me and says, ‘Will everybody come back to work in May?’ I’m like – everyone’s in interviews right now!”
Obviously, none of this is exactly set in stone, and if xXx: Return of Xander Cage does prove to be a financial disappointment, Paramount will more than likely pull the plug on any potential fourth film. It seems that the studio has a lot of faith in the series, however, especially after how popular the recent trailers have been and Diesel’s popularity thanks to the aforementioned franchises he’s already associated with. It’s smart for Paramount to try and get the ball rolling on a fourth entry as soon as possible, as there’s a higher chance of getting more of the cast to return.
Regardless, there are certainly fans out there who would have preferred the xXx franchise ended with Cube's installment, and its particular brand of action may prove a little outdated given the current climate of action films steering more toward the serious side. Even Diesel’s Fast and the Furious franchise has had to evolve over the years, becoming less about racing and more like heist films with elaborate action spectacle. Only time will tell how successful xXx: Return of Xander Cage proves to be, and what it means for the future of the series.
- xXx: Return of Xander Cage (2017) release date: Jan 20, 2017