Vin Diesel believes his late co-star Paul Walker "sent" John Cena to him while he was casting for Fast & Furious 9.
For the upcoming action movie, also known as F9, wrestler-turned-actor Cena joined the cast as Diesel's character Dominic Toretto's brother and arch-nemesis Jakob, and speaking to reporters at the launch of the film's latest trailer, Diesel admitted he believes Cena was sent to him by late Fast and Furious star Walker, who died in a car crash in 2013.
"Once we started getting closer to production, Justin (Lin, director) would talk about how harrowing it would be, to actually have to cast a new Toretto, the brother of Toretto - there's so many different directions you can go," he said, reports PA. "And I remember John Cena coming into this Dom shrine that I had, where I would kind of go meditate and train and start getting into that Dom state of mind.
"I remember John coming in, and, call this crazy, but I remember feeling as though Pablo, Paul Walker, had sent him in. And I remember talking to Justin that night and saying 'My gut and my heart feels like this was meant to be.'"
Blockers star Cena said he was honoured to be part of the high-octane franchise and was fully aware of the responsibility he was taking on when he agreed to play a Toretto.
"I certainly didn't overlook the responsibility, the opportunity as well. I get to reap the rewards of this family who has poured the foundation and built the structure of global delivering blockbuster," he shared. "And I get invited into the ninth instalment, to share the last name Toretto, to be Dom's greatest adversary of all time, that is not lost (on me)."
After being delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Fast & Furious 9 will be released in June.