'Fast And Furious 9' Adds More Muscle With UFC Fighter Francis Ngannou

Since Dwayne Johnson won't be returning for Fast and Furious 9, the sequel needs to find some muscle elsewhere. They've already brought in John Cena for a role in the franchise, but instead of reaching back into the world of wrestling for another cast member, they've snagged a UFC fighter to get in on the action. Francis Ngannou, the #2 fighter in the heavyweight division of UFC, is joining the Fast and Furious 9 cast.

Deadline has word on Cameroonian-French fighter Francis "The Predator" Ngannou joining the Fast and Furious 9 cast. He follows in the footsteps of two other UFC fighters, Gina Carano and Ronda Rousey, who played key roles in Fast and Furious 6 and Furious 7 respectively. None of these fighters have brought much in the vein of acting skills or memorable characters to the table, they bring in more of their key demographic, and having real fighters matched up against Fast and Furious cast members at least gives characters the appearance of being able to take down a formidable opponent.

Ngannou is one bad dude in the ring, having most recently taken down Junior dos Santos with only a 71-second knockout. That victory gave him the most UFC finishes in the heavyweight division. Before that, he even landed a 26-second knockout against former UFC Heavyweight Champion Cain Velasquez. If you want to know more about Ngannou, check out this video from when he was still a rising star at UFC back in the fall of 2017:

There's no word on who Ngannou will be playing, but I wouldn't be surprised if he ended up going up against Vin Diesel at some point, and the muscle car driving tough guy takes him down by hitting him with a car door or a big wrench that he just snapped in half or something ludicrous like that. Maybe he'll even throw him out into the atmosphere. You never know with this franchise.

Fast and Furious 9 is bringing back Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriguez, Chris "Ludacris" Bridges, Tyrese Gibson, Jordana Brewster, Nathalie Emmanuel, and Helen Mirren (though Jason Statham is reportedly not involved). Plus, Charlize Theron has back after surviving The Fate of the Furious as the film's villain. Justin Lin is back in the director's chair, and the movie arrives on May 22, 2020.