Actor Vin Diesel has seen something of a renaissance in his recent career, with his 2009 return to The Fast and the Furious film franchise. Before Fast & Furious, Vin Diesel seemed to want to break away from the über-macho, tough guy persona, shifting to lighter fare such as The Pacifier and Sidney Lumet’s Find Me Guilty. Lately, Diesel is back in the badass business with Furious 6 and the upcoming Riddick sequel film. Now he’s added another science fiction action film to his resume, signing on to star in Soldiers of the Sun, based on a new screenplay from writer Arash Amel.
According to THR, Diesel is set to star in and produce Soldiers of the Sun for Universal. The movie is set in a post-apocalyptic future world and follows a squad of soldiers searching for a fabled city of gold while on a tour of duty in Mexico. During their search, an alien raced called “The Orcs” (no relation to the brutes from Lord of the Rings, surely) ambushes them.
Diesel recently confirmed that he would voice Groot, the treelike alien member of Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy. Considering his super-busy schedule with promoting Riddick, shooting The Fast and the Furious 7, and now producing and starring Soldiers of the Sun, it seems like he could only fit a limited voiceover session into his schedule, so Guardians of the Galaxy seems perfect for him.
Screenwriter Arash Amel made his feature film debut with the thriller Eraser, starring Aaron Eckhart, in 2012. His latest film is the Princess Grace of Monaco (Grace Kelly) biopic Grace of Monaco, starring Nicole Kidman, which will be released on November 27 this year. Arash Amel is currently working on the screenplay for the I Am Legend sequel for Warner Bros.
Veteran producer Lorenzo di Bonaventura will also be producing Soldiers of the Sun, along with Vin Diesel’s Fast and the Furious producing partner Samantha Vincent. Di Bonaventura is currently producing the fourth installment of the Transformers film series for director Michael Bay, and the upcoming Jack Ryan film reboot starring Chris Pine. A few months ago, Lorenzo di Bonaventura landed a big success with G.I. Joe: Retaliation, which took in $371 million worldwide.
Soldier of the Sun would be the third Universal Studios film franchise for Diesel, along with The Fast and the Furious and Riddick. Diesel is on a hot streak that doesn’t look like it will end anytime soon. In fact, adding a Marvel superhero movie to his roster of films will probably make Diesel even more successful and bankable as a leading man in Hollywood. If only the actor could dig deep inside for that Academy Award-winning performance we all know he has inside of him. Are we ready to hear the words “Academy Award-winning actor” attached t the front of Diesel’s name? Lord knows I’m ready!
At the moment, Universal has yet to set a release date for Soldiers of the Sun.