Hollywood’s newest action star can certainly pack a punch.
UFC heavyweight Francis Ngannou, fresh from a 71-second TKO victory against Junior Dos Santos in June, has joined the cast for the upcoming ninth instalment in the ‘Fast & Furious’ move franchise which is set or release in May of next year. News of the casting was first reported by Deadline.
Ngannou, who is of Cameroonian descent, has made big waves since his UFC debut in December 2015. He exploded onto the scene with 6 consecutive finishes before being ushered into a title bout with then-champ Stipe Miocic, where he was outworked by the savvy champion over the course of five rounds.
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Another defeat followed in a strangely uneventful clash with Derrick Lewis in which both men appearing unwilling to engage. However, two defeats on the bounce appeared to redouble Ngannou’s focus and he has since wracked off three first-round finishes in a row against Dos Santos, Cain Velasquez and Curtis Blaydes — in a grand total of a little over two minutes.
Ngannou will join a list of some of the movie industry’s most bankable action stars such as Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson and Jason Statham as having acted in the series, which has also included MMA stars Gina Carano and Ronda Rousey in the past. Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriguez and Jordana Brewster will act opposite Ngannou in this iteration.
WWE star John Cena is also understood to have been cast in the film.
Details of Ngannou’s role remain unknown but it is understood that filming has already begun at location in London, Los Angeles and Thailand.