Getty (2) Vin Diesel (L); Cardi B
"We are very much excited to evolve her character and to expand it to the finale," Diesel, 53, told Entertainment Tonight of Cardi, who plays Leysa in F9. "She made it just in time. She came in Fast 9 just in time."
"I love Cardi ... she showed up and within a minute she's part of the family," director Justin Lin told the same outlet, saying he'd "work with her any day."
"And I love how when I got together with her, her and Vin were talking about the character because she's actually really embedded into the overall universe," added Lin, 49. "She's been around for a long time and this is just the first time we are seeing her, so I'm really excited to explore that character of her."
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Cardi B in F9
Later that month, Diesel shared the news that Cardi had joined F9 in an Instagram video, in which he said, "I know I'm exhausted. I literally - we all gave every single thing we could for this movie. Put it all on the table. Put it all out there."
"I'm tired," the rapper added in agreement. "But I can't wait. I ain't gonna front, I think this is gonna be the best one."
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Cardi previously opened up about her "powerful" and "strong" character in the film, saying in an on-set video shared to the franchise's YouTube channel earlier this month that it was a no-brainer for her to sign on.
"Vin Diesel reached out and he was talking about a role. I'm like, 'It's freakin' Fast & Furious. Get me there - put me on a plane!' " she said. "I like the fact that I'm representing such a powerful, strong woman."
"She's just that bitch," Cardi joked, laughing. "I remember when I saw Ludacris in Fast & Furious, when I saw Tego Calderón, then to see Don Omar, it makes the hood have hope."
"Being around Vin, he's just so nice, so dope," she added. "He makes you feel so comfortable. I'm just so excited. He's just such a badass."
F9 opens in theaters Friday.