One of the earlier movies that highlighted Vin Diesel as an action star was 2002's xXx, and after sitting out the 2005 sequel xXx: State of the Union, Diesel jumped back in as Xander Cage last year for the appropriately-titled xXx: The Return of Xander Cage. After the threequel was released, both Diesel and director D.J Caruso revealed that a fourth film was in the works, and today it was officially confirmed that xXx 4 is moving forward. However, this time around, there's new leadership behind the scenes.

It's been announced that The H Collective and Vin Diesel's production company One Race Films have secured the rights to the xXx franchise from Revolution Studios, which made the first three movies. Revolution will maintain the rights to that original trilogy, but for the fourth installment, H Collective and Once Race Fils will be leading the charge. Along with Vin Diesel back on board to reprise Xander Cage and produce, D.J. Caruso (whose other credits include Disturbia, Eagle Eye and I Am Number Four) will return to direct. xXx 4's other producers include Joe Roth, Jeff Kirschenbaum and Samantha Vincent. Production will begin this December.

While the xXx movies have all been met with mixed-to-negative critical reception, they've performed quite well commercially. In the case of xXx: The Return of Xander Cage, it made more than $346 million worldwide off an $85 million budget. With a money grab like that, it's hardly surprising that xXx 4 was officially greenlit, and with Vin Diesel now controlling the rights to the franchise from this point forward, one would imagine that will allow for more creative freedom. The H Collective was established last summer, and from the get go xXx 4 was being eyed as one of its flagship projects. Mission accomplished!

Other than Vin Diesel's Xander Cage, it hasn't been revealed yet which characters, if any, from the previous xXx movies will return for xXx 4. Of the potential candidates, I suspect that Samuel L. Jackson is likely to reprise NSA agent Augustus Eugene Gibbons since he appeared in all the previous entries. The Return of Xander Cage ended with Gibbons faking his death and beginning work on rebuilding the xXx program, and Xander decided to continue with his service. D.J. Caruso previously said that he envisions xXx 4 being about the main protagonists "watching the watchers," i.e. battling corrupt governments. That would certainly make for a compelling story that marks a new era of the xXx franchise.

Stay tuned to CinemaBlend for more news regarding xXx 4's development. In the meantime, you can next hear Diesel reprising the beloved Groot in Avengers: Infinity War, which opens on April 27. If you're interested in what other movies are opening later this year, look through our 2018 release schedule.

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