Throughout its history, the geography of The Fast and the Furious franchise has usually come down to either Los Angeles, or various far-flung international locales, like Tokyo, Rio de Janeiro, or the Dominican Republic. And in some cases, such as the cars flying through buildings in Abu Dhabi in Furious 7, the term “far flung” is taken quite literally.
But now, it sounds like the franchise is going somewhere it’s never been before: the East Coast. Vin Diesel confirmed in an interview Wednesday where Fast and Furious 8 will be set, by shouting, “New York, baby!”
Appearing on another New York institution formerly based in Los Angeles, The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, Diesel pointed out that the original Fast and Furious movie was based on an article in Vibe magazine about drag racers in New York. Apparently, the producers at the time decided to make the change to Los Angeles, and it has taken the franchise seven films to take The Big Apple by storm.
Diesel was on the show to promote his new movie The Last Witch Hunter, but managed to squeeze in plenty of information about his most successful franchise. The actor also confirmed three more Furious films will be made (or a “trilogy,” as he put it) and expressed excitement about working with F. Gary Gray, who was announced last week as the director of the next film.
Fast & Furious 8, in addition to finding a new locale and director, is of course looking at one other big change – it will be the first installment in the franchise without the late Paul Walker. And while Walker will certainly be missed, it appears a lot of the usual gang will be back, including Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham. What’s not known is anything about the next film’s plot.
Sure New York, with its dense population and notorious road traffic, may not make an ideal venue for drag racing and elaborate high-speed car chases. However, fans needn’t get too worried: Whether it’s elaborate heists, international intrigue or cars that fly, the Furious films stopped being about drag racing and conventional car chases a long time ago.
In addition, given the globe-trotting nature of the most recent installments, we don’t know that The Ocho will be set entirely in New York. But even if it is — it’s possible to stage a great car chase scene in NYC, with enough creativity and use of the outer boroughs. Then again, the series can always take to jumping from building to building again.
Fast & Furious 8 is set to arrive in theaters April 17, 2017.