Action fans can rejoice now that Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson's Fast & Furious spin-off, Hobbs and Shaw has set a start date to begin filming. Johnson breathed new life in to the Fast & Furious franchise after joining in Fast 5. After the increased success of each sequel and a cast of hard to contain egos, it's no surprise that Johnson's U.S. Diplomatic Security Agent Luke Hobbs would get his own story without his Furious family.
Hobbs and Saw will feature Johnson teaming up with fellow action movie staple and Furious cast member Jason Statham, who is reprising Deckard Shaw. The two actors demonstrated undeniable chemistry while working together on the Furious franchise. While Statham's Shaw was one of the bad guys when he was first introduced in Furious 7, he worked alongside Hobbs and the Furious family in Fast 8. Clearly the powers that be saw a goldmine of opportunity in teaming the two action heroes up for a standalone movie, even if other cast members weren't in agreement.
Omega Underground is reporting that filming of Hobbs and Shaw is set to begin in September, with Deadpool 2 and Atomic Blonde director David Leitch set to direct. The timing makes sense with Johnson set to wrap up his role in Disney's Jungle Cruise in August. The Rock previously defended the spinoff film, which garnered criticism due to its timing from fellow Furious actors. Johnson expressed his goal was to help the franchise grow by creating a fun character for the fans to enjoy.
Johnson has certainly drawn a lot of criticsm for pursuing this spinoff movie for his character, especially from Furious cast mate Tyrese Gibson. Gibson publicly called out Johnson and accused him of putting his own personal interests ahead of the rest of the cast by delaying production on the ninth Furious installment in favor of his own spinoff. After a heated feud between Gibson and Johnson (where the former even threatened to quit the franchise), all parties seemed to have moved on now. Gibson revealed the feud was over last November after having a conversation with one of Johnson's associates.
Johnson's latest vehicle, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle has already earned more than $900 million worldwide, with a sequel in the works. Johnson has become a bit of box office gold, ranking second on Forbes list of top-grossing actors in 2017, making it a no brainer to capitalize on his popularity with the Hobbs and Shaw spinoff. Johnson is also a savvy business man who knows how to consistently build his own brand.
Not a lot is known about the plot behind Hobbs and Shaw, other than Johnson and Statham still have undeniable chemistry. Maybe we'll see more physical action than that of the car chase variety in this movie, something that seems to be a bit more of both Johnson and Statham's strong point. It's also been rumored that Charlize Theron may reprise her role as Cipher in the spin-off, which wouldn't come as a huge surprise given the fact that her Atomic Blonde director Leitch is calling the shots.
Source: Omega Underground