The death of Paul Walker at the end of last November was a massive blow to his friends, family and fans, and in the aftermath it would have been difficult to imagine his Fast & Furious 7 co-stars immediately resuming filming. With only about half of the film complete, Fast & Furious 7 required a rewrite in order to gracefully retire the character of Brian O’Conner from the franchise, and those involved in production needed to be given time to grieve.
Shortly after production on Fast & Furious 7 went into hiatus, it was announced that the film’s release had been delayed until April 2015, leaving plenty of room to rework the script. According to some sources, Paul Walker’s brother Cody has been asked to join the film as a stand-in for Brian during some scenes.
Now that writer Chris Morgan and director James Wan have apparently settled on a way to handle Brian’s departure, THR has confirmed that Fast & Furious 7 will resume filming on or around April 1. This should leave the studio with a lengthy post-production window before the film’s release, which is wise since a lot of work will have to be done in the editing room to integrate the footage that Walker had already shot into the updated version of the film.
Described as a “saga” rather than a series by star Kurt Russell in a recent interview, the Fast & Furious franchise has gone from strength to strength with each new movie performing better at the box office than the last (with the exception of The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift). Fast & Furious 7 will feature a revenge-driven plot as Ian Shaw (Jason Statham) seeks retribution against Dominic Toretto’s crew for the death of his brother, Owen Shaw, in Fast & Furious 6.
THR also reports that the remainder of filming will take place in Atlanta, though Russell mentioned Los Angeles and Dubai as other possible locations. Hopefully the creative team have come up with a worthy final farewell to the series for Brian O’Conner.
Fast & Furious 7 will arrive in theaters on April 10, 2015.