The Battlestar Galactica actress, whose crime series Longmire debuts on TCM in the UK this week, told Digital Spy that she shares a personal connection with her character in the sci-fi sequel.
"She's a Nordic bounty hunter and her name is Dahl," Sackhoff said. "It's so funny - when I got the role, I told [director] David Twohy that Dahl was my grandmother's maiden name - it all works out!"
Sackhoff added that Dahl is "probably the toughest character I've ever played": "The characters I've played have always been tough, but they've also been very emotional and a little unstable!
"This character is just incredibly tough. I'm really excited. It's a dream come true. I've been a fan of Vin and the Riddick series for as long as I can remember. I was jumping up and down crying [when I got the role]."
> Digital Spy's Katee Sackhoff 'Longmire' interview
Riddick, which follows on from Pitch Black and The Chronicles of Riddick, will open in the US on September 6.
The story sees Diesel's titular protagonist abandoned on an unknown planet with an alien race of predators out to kill him. Karl Urban, Nolan Gerard Funk and Dave Bautista feature among the supporting cast.