XXX: State of the Union | EW.com

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XXX: State of the Union

Another Vin Diesel franchise, another sequel without Vin Diesel. That’s right: While the bald guy plays with the preschool set (The Pacifier), rapper-actorproducer Ice Cube steps in as the titular rebel-hero in the followup to the $142 million-grossing hit XXX. So did Diesel’s character have an extreme-sports mishap or something? ”In the beginning [of the film], they mention that he’s no longer working for the agency,” explains Ice Cube. ”They’re gonna use a new XXX in each movie.” But whereas Diesel’s version aced the giant slalom and saved the world from Eurotrash villains, Ice Cube’s incarnation is a streetwise Special Forces officer sprung from military prison to help foil a government coup in Washington, D.C. ”He’s a full-blown killing machine,” notes director Lee Tamahori (Die Another Day), who promises a conspiracy thriller plot to complement the daredevil stunts (exploding trains! a 600-foot dive!). Not exactly like his shooting days chillin’ at the Barbershop. ”I climbed a [ladder] chain of an aircraft carrier from the ocean to the ship. That’s high,” says Ice Cube. ”I don’t know if any [stunts] are fun. Any phobia you got, you’re gonna lose it quick.”

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