‘Fast & Furious 7′ Delayed But Still Happening After Death of Paul Walker

Published 1 year ago by , Updated December 3rd, 2013 at 10:34 am,

Fast and Furious 7 Paul Walker Fast & Furious 7 Delayed But Still Happening After Death of Paul Walker

Along with tides of joy of givings of thanks, this holiday weekend brought with it the tragic death of Fast & Furious franchise star, Paul Walker. The forty-year-old actor was in a fatal car crash during a charity event in Santa Clarity, California – and along with an outpouring of shock, horror, and grief from fans all across the world, the big question looming on everyone’s mind was, “How is this going to affect Fast & Furious 7 ?

The seventh installment of the franchise has been in production since earlier this fall, with director James Wan (The Conjuring) taking over the helm from franchise staple, Justin Lin. Part 7 has been touted as a “’70s-style revenge thriller” story featuring Jason Statham as the vengeance-seeking brother of Fast & Furious 6 villain, Owen Shaw (Luke Evans) – meaning that some hard hits are coming to the Dom Terreto (Vin Diesel) and his F&F familia.

Of course, that was before those hard hits became all too real with the death of Walker; in an update from THR, we now learn that Universal has held a meeting determining the fate of Fast & Furious 7. The official company line is that as of now, the film will see a delay in production in order to allow for a proper, respectful, grieving period. That delay could subsequently cause the film’s July 2014 release date to be bumped, but F&F7 will NOT be abandoned.

However, even though the film is still on, there is a question of logistics; namely, HOW to wrap the film in a way that makes sense in the narrative of the film, while remaining respectful to Walker and his legacy.

Fast and Furious 7 Production Release Date Delay Paul Walker Death Fast & Furious 7 Delayed But Still Happening After Death of Paul Walker

…And that is quite a tough nut to crack. On the surface, it would seem an easy fix: rewrite the revenge story so that Walker’s character, Brian O’Connor, meets a noble end somewhere in Ian Shaw’s (Statham) campaign of vengeance. However, the suddenness of Walker’s death (and his position as a franchise lead) means his character’s death was likely NOT in the cards; trying to make it happen onscreen, the easiest fix would be to use some kind of stunt racing sequence that doesn’t require actual shots of the actor’s face – except that any such fix would also be uncomfortably close to depicting the way in which Walker actually died. Audiences are likely not going to be supportive of that – let alone Walker’s family, and his friends amongst the F&F cast and crew.

That leaves us with the possible work-around of an off-screen demise for Brian O’Connor, which – while more tasteful and practical – will seem like an unceremonious end for such an important character in a mega-popular franchise. But then, none of this is easy (tragedy tends to be – well, tragic), and if the film is committed to reaching the finish line, a scenario like the one posited above is probably the best option.

Paul Walker and Jordana Brewster in Fast Furious 6 570x380 Fast & Furious 7 Delayed But Still Happening After Death of Paul Walker

But who knows: Maybe things don’t have to be so dark. Maybe Brian and Mia (Jordana Brewster) and their child are all sent off into the sunset to live free and happy while Dom and the rest of the crew continue to deal with threats at their car doors. Maybe the land of movie fantasy offers fans something better than the harsh reality of life did. Maybe we all could use something a little more uplifting as we say goodbye to an actor whose character was an icon for a generation of moviegoers. One can only hope…

Looking beyond the now, the second biggest question on my mind is whether Vin Diesel and Co. are still committed to making Fast Furious installments beyond part 7 (parts 8 & 9 are already planned). Will it still be fun for the cast and crew (and the fans) to take this ride, now short one passenger? I think we could all understand if the answer to that question was “no.”


Fast & Furious 7 is currently set for July 11, 2014 release. We’ll be keeping an eye on whether or not that date changes.

Source: THR

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  1. i agree with you tmm

  2. i will always remember him

  3. When did statham say that? I assumed his character would be the main bad guy? Does anyone know who else has been cast as an antagonist then?

  4. I really like Paul Walker… I think the man is extremely Charming and likeable and I feel terrible for his family after what happened.

    My solution. A respectful memorial at the start and end of the movie, but recast and reshoot all of his scenes in the actual film. The memorial at the end can show some of the footage he filmed and spend some time interviewing the new actor. Obviously I don’t know… but I would imagine the last thing he would have wanted would be to derail the franchise he was instrumental in building. Brian is a role for an actor to play and like other modern super-hero roles could be played by a number of people.

    The Fast and Furious is an amazing modern action-soap and it should continue unabated… creatively, writing around real-world events would likely harm the story.

    Let Brian live on, maybe even find happiness and leave the franchise under a new actor paying tribute… but don’t do anything as tasteless as killing him off. That’d be a poor way to go out.

    • Yeah, as much as some may not want to hear it…I agree with you that he probably wouldn’t want the franchise to faulter because of his death. I would like to think he would want it to go on.

      I think recasting him would be good. And I like the idea of paying tribute to the actor during the credits

      Oh yeah, don’t forget everyone that his friend also died in the crash. We should be praying for families of 2 deceased.

      • Right on. Agreed.

  5. I’m seriously doubting the first thought on everyone’s mind upon hearing the news of Mr Walkers untimely death was “what will happen to the movies!!). If it was then those people need to have a long hard look at themselves in the mirror.

  6. Don’t kill him off.

    That would be so blatant and crude.

    Just do the honourable sunset departure honouring the man and the character and be done with it.

    Move on.

  7. I think they should wrap it up after 7. I love them but I think Enough F&F movies.

  8. They should put Statham on a rampage, killing all the crew, resulting in Dom telling Walker’s wife to take him and their daughter. This could be played as a really emotional scene with a car riding off into the sunset and them implying Paul was in the car.

  9. What they could do, is split up F&F 7 in two parts, making it F&F 7 & 8.

    This way, they can create another storyline in which Walker’s character gets a satisfying end in the franchise. They can use footage they didn’t intend to use, outtakes, cut scenes, also use CGI (like they do in the Lord of the Rings movies, that can look pretty natural if done right). You’ll never get a true emotional scene, like only Walker could’ve given, as a proper sendoff, but they’ll have enough time to construct something more of less satisfying.

    The second option is not doing anything. F&F 7 is probably already in the can, with Walker having a beer with Diesel in his house at the end of the movie. That’s not such a bad ‘last scene’. The trouble will come with F&F 8 and the explanation of his sudden disappearance.

    Should the franchise continue after F&F 7? I’m not too sure. However, I thought Walker had considerably less screen time in Fast 6 already. I didn’t think that was such a good idea.

    • I’ve never seen a CG person look realistic in a movie (as in, you can’t spot that it’s fake). Robots and monsters (and blue aliens) yes, but people, no.

  10. I can see that they can’t just shoot him, or let him die in a dibotical trap. But it would be more unrealistic to have him crash, as he was a better driver than Torreto. But, there is always the character from Tokyo Drift. The kid was talented and had a mean streak with no where to go. So, lets let Brian retire, instead of killing him…Brian decides he’s too old and has too many responsibilities to continue the street racing life. So enters that kid from Tokyo drift. And last thing: who said FF was ever logical? Did anyone ever realize the length of that airport runway in 7? That sucker had to be the size of a small state.

    • Yes, I mentioned that to my friend and we chuckled in the theatre, and it was also made fun of by various sources online afterwards.

  11. Wow, the creators must be really devoted to this series. RIP Paul Walker but I still think they have done enough of the movies. Just my opinion though, others love the heck outta the series.

  12. gave him a good life with mia and their child, that’s better and proper… we will always remember you and your contribution in F&F famlily-movie… we will miss you, dude. R.I.P. be in better place…

  13. It depends on where they are in terms of production. There are no easy answers, and just about any one given might be seen as some as insensitive/disrespectful. Even if Walker had filmed the majority of his scenes before his death, even that might appear to be insensitive, as the character would most likely be behind the wheel at some point, driving fast. To not have the character around – from what I see from the comments here – is in some eyes insensitive. Given that the previous film had a lot of emphasis on brotherhood, loyalty and family, that makes this all the more harder.

    A lot would depend on how much with Walker has already been filmed. But, that said, if it were me, I would not kill off the character. I know fans such as myself wouldn’t want the character sidelined, but that seem like the most likely scenario. As for story, I guess O’Conner might be recruited to work for Hobbs and the DSS in an unrelated event to the main ploy on Fast 7. I would also consider ending the franchise w/ 7 , or having a spinoff film with other characters.

  14. Although it seems distateful, i actually would kill Brian O’Connor in a Car-crash like in Walker died in real life. It only matters how you treat that in the movie. Make a storypoint how Torretto and his gang overestimated their driving-skills, and how they critisize themvselves for their lifestyle after Brian makes a crucial driving-mistake that will kill him. The message would also fit due to the real life tragedy.

    “Drive carefully”!

  15. according to Dutch TV the recording of the original film was completed already

  16. Just a question for continunity sake: If this takes place after the first sequel but before 3,4,5,6……obviously Brian can’t die, right? or go off into the sunset?

    • F&F 7 would take place after 2F2F but before 4, 5 and 6, so Brian O’Conner would still be alive. Brian wasn’t in Tokyo Drift but he returned in F&F 4, so the writers would need to do something creative with the Brian O’Conner character.

      • It goes: FF1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 3 (Tokyo Drift), and 7. Basically go by Han’s time of death. He was still alive in FF6, but showed him die in the end credits/FF3. FF7 will be the aftermath of the FF family finding out he was murdered.

        Relating to the article, I really like the last option. Dom has always been trying to push his sister (and Brian sometimes) to get out of harms way. Finally “succeeding” would make sense and satisfy the audience, even though we would all prefer him to stay :(. The couple is the only one with a kid to take care of as well.

  17. Is Time to end this movie, dont make 7. Respect this man. No for the acting, really is a nice person

  18. have Toretto make a deal with someone that means O’Connor and his family need to leave and maybe throw together some old archive footage to make it believable

  19. The respectable thing to do would be to scrap the film entirely or rewrite the entire movie without Walker being in it.

  20. It goes: FF1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 3 (Tokyo Drift), and 7. Basically go by Han’s time of death. He was still alive in FF6, but showed him die in the end credits/FF3. FF7 will be the aftermath of the FF family finding out he was murdered.

    Relating to the article, I really like the last option. Dom has always been trying to push his sister (and Brian sometimes) to get out of harms way. Finally “succeeding” would make sense and satisfy the audience, even though we would all prefer him to stay :(. The couple is the only one with a kid to take care of as well.

  21. Gonna be tough for them, I agree the simply thing would be to have the bad guy kill off Brian like he did Han and then make the film go from SHaw wanting revenge for his brothers death to Vin and the group wanting revenge for Han and Brian.

    But like you said having him die in a car crash is probably something his family the the crew wont want to do.

    And taking him and Mia and the kid completely out of the film would work, I’m sure Mia would like to still be in the movie but you could do that, when they find out Shaw is after them they send Brian/Mia somewhere to be safe while Vin and the Rock handle it but thats not be gonna satisfying for fans.

    Its really tragic that he died and not to seem like a dick because life is more important than a movie but the truth is this film franchise is Vins, its him and the Rock right now and then the rest of the crew. Brian was important but to the movie it can continue on as long as Vin is around.

  22. The best thing to do is make him and mia leave, so it is respectful and he doesnt die, it would still make since if they leave because they come back in the other movies, then fast and furious 8 could go off of the last film that takes place but still leave them out of it, its pretty simple, but be respectful to Paul(Brian O’ Conner)Walker

  23. I know some people hate these movies but The Fast And The Furious series is my favorite film series. The first movie is my favorite movie of all time (seriously), say what you want but I don’t care. When I heard that Paul Walker died, I couldn’t believe it. After a few hours I started thinking about F&F 7 and said, “What will they do with his character?” I’ve been patiently waiting to see F&F 7 ever since it was announced after the release of F&F 6, but since F&F 7 takes place after Tokyo Drift and now that Paul Walker has passed away, I don’t see what they’ll do with Mr. Walker’s Brian O’Conner character. There are a few options: 1. Rewrite F&F 7 without the Brian O’Conner and Mia Toretto characters, 2. Keep the Brian O’Conner and Mia Toretto characters but don’t show them on screen and say they’re at home taking care of their child, 3. No Brian O’Conner character and no mention of him at all, 4. Kill the Brian O’Conner character off in a death NOT related to a car accident off screen, 5. Say the Brian O’Conner character took off on the Mia Toretto character and abandoned her and the child, 6. Say the Brian O’Conner character took off on the Mia Toretto character and died and explain his death in F&F 8, 7. Brian O’Conner joined the FBI (because F&F 7 takes place after Tokyo Drift and in the very next movie, F&F 4 he was an FBI agent) and 8. Cancel the entire movie.

    Now I think options #1 and #3 would be disrespectful to Paul Walker, #5 is uncharacteristic of the Brian O’Conner character because he’s not a quitter, #7 seems unlikely because I don’t think director Justin Lin thought about the film series’ timeline while filming F&F 6 but he kinda did by adding the post credits scene, #8 obviously really isn’t an option because this article rules that out. So then maybe they’ll go with either option #2 or #4 because I don’t think they’ll wait to F&F 8 for option #6. Hey, I could be totally off. IMHO I think Universal should have waited a few weeks to say anything about the status of F&F 7 because the man (Paul Walker) just died. They could give the family, friends and fans more time to grieve.

    Rest In Peace Mr. Paul Walker

  24. I have seen parts of the script and I can confirm that a twist in the movie involved Walker’s character appearing to be killed only to show up at the end alive and well to the shock of Staham’s character. I’m not sure if the “death scene was filmed but if it was all that’s required is reshoots to make the death a real thing

  25. So with the passing of Paul Walker, he was one of my top 5 favorite actors R.I.P., what do you guys think that’s going to happen with the FAST AND FURIOUS franchise? Changes, with story, screen write, actors changing, etc. How much will it effect the cast and story? Will it do as good as before without Walker on board? Let me know what you guys think.

  26. I think the best way to proceed is to keep Walker as a part of the movie and find a way to write his character out.
    I’m not suggesting that that is an easy task but because Walker was such a huge part of the series you have to find a way to keep his character in memory.
    So no re-casting
    I think Universal should announce that they are going to donate part of the box-office to different charities Walker supported. That way some (however small) good can seem to come of this and it will also give fans a way to feel like they can do something while honoring an actor they loved.

  27. I know this is a hot topic but why not just recast, Leave walkers already filmed scenes in the film then add a scene were he needs to get plastic surgery to go into hiding. they could cast another actor. It worked for health ledger and i think they could make it work here. My choice would be Scott speedman

  28. Either they could recast the role, with a great actor who is as good as Paul Walker and worthy enough to play Brian O’Conner or the character Brian O’Conner could die of an illness in the movie. I just Paul Walker to be given the honour he deserves :”( a brilliant example of a human being