The triumphant two-decade run of the Fast and Furious franchise is almost coming to an end, with Fast & Furious 10 and Fast & Furious 11 confirmed to be the final chapters of The Fast Saga. For the two-part finale, the renowned cast will be back together with lead star Vin Diesel, who plays Dominic Torreto for more than 20 years.
Universal Studios also appoints Justin Lin, who helmed five Fast and Furious films, as the director for the two-part finale of the blockbuster franchise.
Following Fast X's release date announcement, Diesel announced earlier this week that the movie has begun filming. The film's production also confirms cast members who are returning to their roles, including Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Ludacris, Sung Kang, Jordana Brewster, Nathalie Emmanuel, and Charlize Theron. New additions to the ensemble cast feature Captain Marvel's Brie Larson, Aquaman''s Jason Momoa, and The Suicide Squad's Daniela Melchior.
Unfortunately, Fast X has hit a major setback as a new report from Deadline says that director Justin Lin has departed the production due to creative differences, just after the filming began. The filming will reportedly continue to the second unit before production temporarily pauses while Universal Studios is looking for Lin's replacement. However, Lin will remain as a producer for Fast X.
See director Justin Lin's full statement below:
"With the support of Universal, I have made the difficult decision to step back as director of FAST X, while remaining with the project as a producer. Over 10 years and five films, we have been able to shoot the best actors, the best stunts, and the best damn car chases. On a personal note, as the child of Asian immigrants, I am proud of helping to build the most diverse franchise in movie history. I will forever be grateful to the amazing cast, crew and studio for their support, and for welcoming me into the FAST family."
Losing Justin Lin in the director's seat must be a big blow for the franchise's production. After directing five films for the franchise, starting with The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift and its last installment to date, F9, Lin certainly knows every key element of how to helm a heavy blockbuster film. While it's not known yet what 'creative decisions' led to Lin's exit, Universal Studios must find the director's replacement right away.
While Universal Studios hasn't released any statement yet about Justin Lin's departure and potential replacement, Furious 7's James Wan is currently busy with several upcoming projects, so the studio might discuss the potential return of The Fate of The Furious director F. Gary Gray to replace Lin. It's hard to distinguish yet who will next helm the film at this point, but Lin's departure might cause a conflict for the franchise.
Fast X is pushing a 2023 release date.