Universal's marketing blitz for Furious 7 continues today, with just over two weeks left until the latest Fast and the Furious installment rides into U.S. theaters. The first clip from the movie is now available for viewing online (see above); it features the franchise's leading man Vin Diesel (back as Dominic Toretto) opposite Kurt Russell as Petty: one of several characters who're making their debut in the Fast and the Furious universe with this seventh chapter.
The Furious 7 storyline (cooked up by the franchise's go-to scribe Chris Morgan) sees Dom and his crew being hunted by Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham): the ex-special forces operative who's looking for some payback, seeing as Dom and Co. contributed to his brother's death in Furious 6. There's also a MacGuffin called the God's Eye that figures into this plot, as is discussed during the above scene between Dom and Petty.
The short of it: get the God's Eye and the tech genius Ramsey (Nathalie Emmanuel) who knows how to operate it, and Dom will be able to find Shaw and take him down.
Part of what has allowed the Fast and the Furious brand to thrive for so long (going on nearly fifteen years now) is that the franchise has continuously evolved with every new installment. Case in point: this film series has previously explored such genres as neo-Noir/crime drama (Fast and the Furious), cop/criminal buddy adventure (2 Fast 2 Furious), international heist thriller (Fast Five), and most recently Euro-thriller territory with Furious 6.
Furious 7 director James Wan (Insidious, The Conjuring) has likened his Fast and the Furious movie to a 1970s revenge thriller in the past. However, sequences like the above exchange between Dom and Petty - as well as the trailer footage showing Dom and his team trotting the globe and going under-cover in style - suggest there's also very much a James Bond espionage vibe to the proceedings here. It's certainly befitting for a movie that involves a special gadget called the God's Eye.
Another key element that has allowed the Fast and the Furious property to continue on as it has is the sense of camaraderie between the core cast members; something that relieves some of the tension during the long and complicated shoots for each individual film, no doubt.
So much is also self-evident in the above twelve minutes of Furious 7 B-Roll footage - showing Wan and the other new additions (such as cast members/real-life martial arts experts Tony Jaa and Rounda Rousey) interacting with the seasoned Fast and the Furious lineup. We also get a first look at Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift star Lucas Black back in the saddle here; word is he may wind up playing a more significant role in the all-but-inevitable Furious 8 (and possibly beyond).
It's for related reasons that the tragic death of Paul Walker in late 2013 was not just a blow to the franchise, but also a huge personal loss for his longtime costars and crew. Early reviews for Furious 7 suggest the movie is a proper reflection of the cast and filmmakers' efforts to pay tribute to their departed collaborator - someone who, for many of them, was also a real-life friend.
Who would've thought that the seventh Fast and the Furious movie would also end up being the one most likely to cause the fans of this franchise to shed a tear?
Furious 7 opens in U.S. theaters on April 3rd, 2015.