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Vin Diesel says Paul Walker “sent” John Cena to ‘Fast and Furious 9’

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Universal

Fast & Furious 9 will introduce John Cena to the franchise as the forsaken younger brother of Vin Diesel‘s Dominic Toretto, a move Diesel believes came in a message from his late friend and co-star Paul Walker.

“I remember once we started getting closer to production, [F9 director Justin Lin] and I would talk about how harrowing it would be to actually cast a new Toretto, the brother of Toretto,” Diesel said in a recent press conference, according to Comicbook.

“There’s so many different directions you could go. And I remember John Cena coming into this Dom Shrine that I had where I would kind of go to meditate and train and start getting into that Dom state of mind,” he continued. “And I remember John coming in and… call this crazy, but I remember feeling as though Pablo, Paul Walker, had sent him in.  I remember talking to Justin that night and saying, ‘My gut and my heart feels like this was meant to be.’”

Cena joins Diesel and returning cast members Michelle RodriguezTyrese GibsonChris “Ludacris” BridgesNathalie Emmanuel and  Jordana Brewster, along with Sung KangHelen MirrenKurt Russell and Charlize Theron.

F9 opens June 25.

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