Even though XXX: The Return of Xander Cage just lost an action icon, it has scored quite a casting coup in the process. It appears that Jet Li has dropped out of the long-anticipated action thriller. But replacing him is the legendary Donnie Yen. The Hong Kong box office star is just coming off of Ip Man 3 starring opposite Mike Tyson. And will next be seen in the December blockbuster Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.

Vin Diesel shared a photo of himself on set this morning with Donnie Yen, which you can see below. He also shared a photo of himself on his motocross bike, doing another insane jump in the air. A source close to the production says that Jet Li had to be replaced quickly after dropping out for undisclosed reasons. Donnie Yen was quick to accept the open position, which is believed to be the main villain. The official xXx: The Return of Xander Cage synopsis reads as such.

"The third explosive chapter of the blockbuster franchise that redefined the spy thriller finds extreme athlete turned government operative Xander Cage (Vin Diesel) coming out of self-imposed exile and on a collision course with deadly alpha warrior Xiang and his team in a race to recover a sinister and seemingly unstoppable weapon known as Pandora's Box. Recruiting an all-new group of thrill-seeking cohorts, Xander finds himself enmeshed in a deadly conspiracy that points to collusion at the highest levels of world governments."

It is believed that Jet Li was starring as the deadly alpha warrior Xiang, the role that Donnie Yen is now taking on. The supporting cast includes Deepika Padukone, Nina Dobrev, Ruby Rose, Tony Jaa and UFC fighter Conor McGregor. D.J. Caruso (I Am Number Four) is directing xXx: The Return of Xander Cage. The film is written by Chad St. John (London Has Fallen) with current revisions by F. Scott Frazier (Collide).

Packed with the series' signature deadpan wit and bad-ass attitude, xXx: The Return of Xander Cage will raise the bar on extreme action with some of the most mind-blowing stunts to ever be caught on film. Paramount Pictures will distribute xXx: The Return of Xander Cage worldwide. Revolution CEO Vince Totino, who is executive producing the film for the studio along with COO Scott Hemming, had this to say in his statement.

"We are extremely pleased to be working with Vin, Samantha (Vincent), Joe (Roth), (Jeff) Kirschenbaum and Paramount to bring this fan-favorite franchise back to the screen. xXx is one of the jewels in Revolution's rich library of commercially successful and acclaimed films, and now with Vin on board, a great script and director D.J. Caruso on hand, we are poised to deliver a worthy successor."

Revolution Studios, Roth Kirschenbaum Films and Vin Diesel's One Race Films will produce the next film in the blockbuster xXx franchise. Producer and star Vin Diesel will reprise his iconic role as an extreme athlete-turned-superspy in the sequel, xXx: The Return of Xander Cage. The film is shooting in Toronto, with additional filming in the Dominican Republic. The Dominican Republic portion of the shoot will make use of Lantica Media's Pinewood Dominican Republic Studios, production services and its state-of-the-art horizon water tank. Production has been under way on xXx: The Return of Xander Cage since January. Check out the latest set photos.