After learning last week that Justin Lin – director of Fast & Furious 3 – 6 – would not be returning for the seventh installment, Universal quickly began its search for a new Fast & Furious 7 director, as the studio still wants to begin production on the next film this summer, with the hope to push it out by the summer of 2014.
Lin, who is still in post-production on Fast & Furious 6, wasn’t game for working on both simultaneously, so now the highly-sought after job is up for grabs. However, with no time to waste, Universal has apparently whittled that longer wishlist of would-be directors down to just three.
According to Latino Review, that rumored shortlist consists of Kick-Ass 2 director Jeff Wadlow, The Lincoln Lawyer helmer Brad Furman and Harald Zwart, who is best known for directing the Karate Kid remake starring Jackie Chan. Again, we can’t stress enough that this list is a just a rumor at this point – but after looking at each of these three choices, it seems like the franchise will be placed into fairly capable hands.
Wadlow would likely be the most popular pick among fans, as he is arguably the biggest up-and-comer among the trio. Even though his much-anticipated followup to the 2010 surprise hit Kick-Ass is still months away from release, many are giving him plenty of praise based purely on the unabashed footage from Kick-Ass 2′s red-band trailer.
Wadlow has plenty of experience in action directing, coming from films like Never Back Down and Kick-Ass 2, but Fast & Furious 7 would easily be the biggest undertaking of his career, at least in terms of budget and scope. We’ve already seen glimpses of some of Kick-Ass 2′s impressive fight sequences, but we can safely bet that there are no tanks rolling over cars, or exploding commercial airliners, like in the Fast & Furious 6 trailer. Wadlow will have never directed that kind of action before.
Then there’s Furman, whose film The Lincoln Lawyer won over audiences and critics alike (including our own Vic Holtreman) in 2011. Though that movie wasn’t big on action either, Furman certainly showed the ability to shape multi-dimensional characters while creating plenty of edge-of-your-seat suspense, which are two elements the Fast franchise could probably use a little more of. But like Wadlow, he too would be dealing with big set-piece action like he never has before.
Finally, we have Zwart, who also displayed a particular flair for hand-to-hand fight scenes in the 2010 remake of The Karate Kid. However, beyond that, he has no real action directing experience, as his second most notable directing credit is The Pink Panther 2 starring Steve Martin.
Of course, it’s hard to judge a filmmaker on something he or she hasn’t done. For all we know, when surrounded by the perfect technical crew, each of these three could easily deliver a solid high-octane entry into the Fast series; after all, was anyone really betting that the director of Better Luck Tomorrow (Lin) was going to be a successful action blockbuster director before he actually stepped up and did it?
Each of these directors has some successful films on his respective resume, and they each have some talent to boot. We’ll just have to wait and see who the studio likes – and with the time crunch, we’ll likely know very soon.
Let us know who you think should direct Fast & Furious 7 in the comments below and be sure to check out Fast & Furious 6 when it hits theatres on May 24, 2013.
Source: Latino Review