The Word: ‘The Fast and the Furious’ sequels almost went direct to DVD

Vin Diesel, right, is revered by fans of the "Fast and the Furious" franchise.
Vin Diesel, right, is revered by fans of the “Fast and the Furious” franchise.

“Fast & Furious 6″ is destroying the box office, leaving “Star Trek Into Darkness” in the dust. It almost didn’t get the chance, though — the studio considered dumping “The Fast and the Furious” in straight-to-DVD purgatory way back after the second movie, according to TheWrap.

Universal apparently felt that “The Fast and the Furious” series was more or less played out after “Tokyo Drift,” but they decided to give it another shot by going back to its heist roots and bringing back the original cast, including Vin Diesel, who apparently is a godlike figure to “Fast & Furious” fans.

When Diesel reappeared onscreen, “It was like a rock concert,” Jeffrey Kirschenbaum, Universal Pictures co-president of production, said. “The audience went ballistic.”

Maybe they had just noticed that his name is Diesel and he stars in a franchise about cars. That’s pretty cool.

Kirschenbaum attributes the franchise’s massive international success to the diversity of its cast.

“We’re the Benetton of casting,” Kirschenbaum said. “We’re one of the few franchises that has Spanish spoken throughout it.”

Does it? I don’t really remember any dialogue except the revving of engines. Maybe I was so busy following the intricately constructed plot that the multilingual repartee eluded me.



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