What makes this statement so bold is how much we’ve already seen of the next installment in the globe-spanning, billion-dollar franchise. In the four-minute trailer released in January 2020, it was revealed that new family member John Cena is literally part of the family. He plays Jacob, the long-lost brother of Dom (Diesel). And the jolts only continued, between Charlize Theron’s Cipher haircut and cars jumping from one island to another (skyscrapers are so 2015). Oh, and did I mention that Han (Sung Kang) came back from the dead?
Did you catch all of that? Well, we did, and while we wait for the premiere of F9 to finally arrive on May 28, we had to roast diesel, one quarter mile at a time.
ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: It’s been almost a year since you were in Miami during Super Bowl weekend, where you hosted a concert to unveil the epic first trailer. What was the experience like sitting on this film for so long, anxiously waiting for it to come out for the world to see?
VIN DIESEL: I’m definitely looking forward to sharing it. When you make a good film, the first goal is to make something you can be proud of, and in the film business you learn early on that when the film comes out, even without the pandemic, you rarely have control over it. But if you really think about the quality of the film, you have more time to work on post-production, more time to get the shots right; that gives you a little bit of leeway.
Well, when the trailer came out and we could still be in the offices, I can’t tell you how happy I was when I saw it, while my colleagues were confused as to why I was screaming so loud. And the first revelation that hit me was that John Cena plays Dom’s brother Jacob, whose shock is only compounded by the fact that no one cares more about the family than Dom. Why did that seem like a smart idea?
Family is at the heart of Fast & Furious, and the way it’s explored and toyed with is what makes the franchise interesting. One of the most appealing aspects of Fast is this backstory that we were introduced to literally 20 years ago, and it’s always had a cloak of darkness. We’ve always wanted to know a little bit more about the origins. And I think a franchise has to earn the right to dive into a backstory, and I hope Fast & Furious has done that. I think the instinct or the desire to dive into the backstory, almost the origin story, was a compelling thing for everybody.