After the success (and general fun) of Fast Five, there’s been plenty of interest in what will come next for the Fast and the Furious franchise. It’s been previously stated that the fourth installment, Fast & Furious, was the beginning of a new story arc in the franchise – one that continued in Fast Five, and will carry on into Fast and the Furious 6.

The rumor mill has long whispered that the Fast and the Furious gang would next put pedal to the pavement in Europe – which was further evidenced by an after-credits sequence in Fast Five. The other part of that same batch of rumors had it that part 6 and part 7 would be shot back-to-back, likely bringing the story of rogue FBI agent Brian O’Conner (Paul Walker) and gearhead crook Dominic Toretto (Vin Diesel) to a close.

Well, we still don’t know a lot about what’s in store for Fast and the Furious 6 – but today we have a small update on some of the plans for the film, thanks to word from the latest (and greatest?) addition to the franchise: Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, who plays fugitive manhunter, Luke Hobbs.

According to Johnson, Fast and the Furious 6 will NOT be shooting back-to-back with part 7:

“I don’t think we’re going to shoot them back-to-back. We were going to try that because it wouldn’t make sense to have the same crew and have everybody there in one place, but I think we’re dealing with some weather issues, so from what I know we’re going to shoot ‘Fast 6′ first and then worry about ‘Fast 7′ a little later.”

I think a lot of movie fans would agree, at this point: treating each installment of a movie franchise as its own project generally results in a higher quality film. As franchises like The Matrix or Pirates of the Caribbean have proven, the back-to-back approach to filmmaking does not often yield impressive results.

Before Johnson was done, he also lent further confirmation to the European setting:

“We’re going to be in the U.K., we’re going to be in Germany, from what I know. That’s the early talks, and we’re going to start shooting in May.”

To be clear: we know director Justin Lin and his cast have a plan for the next two chapters of the franchise, so Johnson’s mention of the UK and Germany could fit into that grand design, meaning we can’t say for certain that part 6 will include both. Time will tell.

The Fast and the Furious 6 is slated to begin production this May, for release on May 24th, 2013

Source: MTV