There’s no question that Vin Diesel has made his name as an action hero, particularly in the xXx, Fast & Furious and Chronicles of Riddick film series. But he’s also danced around the superhero world, providing his voice for the title role of the animated film The Iron Giant and for Groot, the walking, talking and sassy tree character in various Guardians of the Galaxy and Avengers Marvel films. Now he’s ready to star in his first all-out superhero role in the new film Bloodshot.

Based on the Valiant comic book, Vin plays Ray Garrison, an elite soldier recently killed in action and brought back to life as the superhero Bloodshot by the RST Corporation. Equipped with an army of nanotechnology in his veins, he becomes an unstoppable force and the strongest warrior the corporation has ever seen, and able to heal instantly. But in upgrading his body, the company is also manipulating his mind and memories. As he begins to remember his past life, Ray isn’t sure what’s real and what’s not, but he’s determined to take back control.

Sony Pictures Entertainment

For Diesel, who also serves as producer, a superhero exhibiting a real Achilles’ heel feels very grounded — and the actor says that the character’s heroic side is just as grounded. “If you ask guys in the military who their favorite comic book character is, it’s Bloodshot,” he notes. “Ray’s core values are the core values of anyone that’s ever served. I’ve never seen a character like this, someone who can be focused exclusively on the mission, but you in the audience are feeling for him, because you know that the company is exploiting him. His motives are good, so you just want to see him get what he wants.

“I feel that anyone can identify with feeling manipulated,” he adds. “As we watch the news in our daily lives there are so many moments that we’re feeling force fed or being manipulated. I like the idea of a hero with powers whose real battle is against that.”

Bloodshot will be released to theaters on March 13.