Thanks to practical stunts, a globetrotting narrative, and a diverse cast, the Fast & Furious franchise continues to thrive after more than fifteen years of life. This year's The Fate of the Furious marks the eighth film in the Fast and Furious series. With the loss of Paul Walker prior to the release of Furious 7, however, the future of the franchise was in question. As such, the new movie will not only serve as something of a tribute to the former star, but a way to kick off a new era for the series.
With Fate, the team behind the films will be switching things up a bit by pairing Dom with a new villain and testing the bonds of family that have been built up in the previous movies. The tactic looks to be working already, as Fate of the Furious' projected opening weekend take is $110 million and the latest Fate of the Furious trailer set social media ablaze. It's not wonder that (at least) two more Fast & Furious installments have already been planned.
Thanks to the new status quo, the stage will also be set for the franchise to move in a new direction. Speaking at Universal's CinemaCon 2017 panel, Diesel has the following to say about Fate of the Furious:
"As the world sees this movie, they'll see how its the beginning of a new trilogy."
Diesel also mentioned that certain characters were brought onboard for Fate of the Furious, to be part of this new film trilogy, meaning we may see these characters take a more active role in shaping the plot of the upcoming films. Although it's been over a year since Universal first announced release dates for Fast & Furious 9 and 10, Diesel's reveal at CinemaCon confirms that the plot for Fate of the Furious lays the groundwork for two additional (final?) chapters.
Among the newcomers in Fate of the Furious who could be part of this new Fast & Furious trilogy are Charlize Theron and Helen Mirren. Theron may yet survive Fate of the Furious, only to continue to serve as the Big Bad for the new trilogy. Either that, or she could join the Fast team like Jason Statham's Deckard Shaw will be doing this go around. As for Mirren: if Luke Evans is to be believed, then the Oscar-winner is playing the Shaw Brothers' mother.
While her addition to the cast may seem baffling at first, Mirren actually asked Diesel for a Fast & Furious role. Given that level of dedication, it wouldn't surprise us to see her return with a bigger role in subsequent films. After all, with a cast as diverse as the Fast franchise, it'd be great to see an older character join the crew. With Fate of the Furious releasing in just a few weeks, we'll likely know even more soon about the future of the series.
- The Fate of the Furious (2017) release date: Apr 14, 2017