Oh man, remember when Tony Jaa was supposed to be the next big thing? That was nearly a decade ago with the release of 2003’s “Ong-Bak,” a slick action flick that showed the skills of a young martial artist who had the killer combination of being quick, inventive and deadly. The sequels to that film didn’t quite land with the same impact, and whatever momentary wave the Thai actor made stateside seemed to evaporate, but now he’s giving a roundhouse right kick to a franchise.
Jaa has joined the forthcoming “Fast & Furious 7,” marking his first English language flick and studio debut. Details on the movie, being written by Chris Morgan, are being kept quiet for now, so no word yet on his role, or who he’ll rumble with. But with the cast including Vin Diesel, The Rock and Jason Statham, there are some potential matchups here that could make action fans very, very pleased. But Jaa isn’t the only experienced fighter coming on board the flick. UFC champion Ronda Rousey will also have a small role as well, but again, exact details are under wraps.
Either way, heading into its seventh movie, “Fast & Furious” franchise just keeps getting bigger and bigger. James Wan is at the helm of the next installment with production kicking off this fall, to shift this one into theatres next summer on July 11th. [THR/The Wrap]