Earlier today, we told you about some very interesting social media posts from Vin Diesel which appeared to indicate that Rob Cohen may return to take the helm of Fast and Furious 8. However, a new report from Deadline refutes that; instead, Ericson Core (Point Break) and Louis Leterrier (The Incredible Hulk) are said to be among those eyed by Universal to direct.
Both men would certainly bring the crazy, over the top action to the franchise that we’ve come to expect, but now Diesel has taken to his Facebook page to issue a statement which once again seems to indicate that he’s considering stepping in as director, something the studio is apparently not even remotely keen on making a reality.
“It is no secret that my good friend Justin and I have been very intensely discussing the trilogy, as we have dreamed it for almost a decade. We know that when we re-team we will shock the world. It is also no secret that he is finishing Trek for JJ and won’t be done in time for us to make the date the studio wanted me to announce of April 14th 2017. This would leave 8 without an obvious go to director…I will share something crazy that my mother said six months ago after the studio had me announce the date for 8 to the world… ”Either you direct 8 yourself… or don’t do it.’ Some of you vinbook pioneers are all too familiar with my mother’s wisdom, as I have posted her sayings in the past on Our page… but I wrote it off as just a mother’s love and belief in me, though she has seen first hand what I’ve done to make these movies defy expectations and become increasingly successful, even when the studio thought I was crazy… haha.”
That very much comes across as something of a power move by Diesel to make it clear he’s interested in directing, but The Hollywood Reporter’s insiders tell them that Universal is not happy with his comments, stating that the Guardians of the Galaxy star taking the helm of Fast and Furious is “never going to happen.” Ouch!
Diesel did, however, shed some light on why he expressed interest in Cohen returning:
“Back to the matter of 8… First and most importantly is the SCRIPT, which has to be great. Hopefully the writer will deliver something within the next two weeks… before my Witch Hunter press tour begins. There has always been the desire by Paul to have Rob direct one more, this is what fueled my campaign… I believe that he can and would reset the franchise nicely, returning to what was the core of the film in the beginning… racing. He would also handle the Brian O’connor issue with integrity, given that he and David Ayer were the ones who initially created that beloved character in the first place.”
That’s an interesting and valid point, but almost everyone agrees that the Fast and Furious franchise significantly improved when the spotlight was taken away from racing and put on turning the franchise into an action series with crazy stunts and kick-ass fight scenes. What’s next for Fast and Furious remains to be seen, but here’s hoping Universal find someone soon. If not, Diesel might be their only hope…