‘Fast X’ director reveals his level of input into creating the franchise’s best-ever villain
The Fast & Furious franchise has long prided itself on delivering high-octane stupidity with as many bullets and straight faces as possible, and Fast X was no exception. While longtime fans of the franchise may find these beloved characters tugging at their heart strings here and there, the surreal undertones baked into this latest entry make for some surefire laughs, however inappropriately-timed they may seem on the surface.
Even though it’s a touch difficult to praise the film without being a little bit ironic, Jason Momoa‘s turn as antagonist Dante Reyes was legitimately excellent regardless of the Fast context. Indeed, armed with unprecedented levels of cheeky yet menacing flamboyance and the shortest fuse imaginable, Momoa stole the show like no other.
It all goes to show that hard work and team efforts pay off, especially when a director falls in love with the actor the way Louis Leterrier did with Momoa. In an interview with The Wrap, the Fast X director reflected on the collaborative experience that came with crafting the character of Dante, noting that he poured quite a bit of Momoa’s real-life personality into him.
“Every character I molded based on being more representative to who they really are in real life than a character. I mean, frankly, Jason, that’s who that guy is. I mean, slightly less mean and perverted — just slightly. He’s amazing. He’s a party. I loved him the moment I met him. I arrived and he was in Rome shooting the stuff on the motorcycle. And I was like, ‘Oh, that’s amazing. Can you say that?’ Because I had monitors and then, “For tomorrow, can you learn “O Sole Mio,” and then sing it like you’re Pavarotti?’ He’s like, ‘Are you insane?’ I was like, ‘Yeah, but you are, too. OK, come on. I love you, man.'”
So there you have it folks; the recipe for a top-tier Fast & Furious villain is simply one serving of Jason Momoa with a cup of dramatized psychopathy, and just like that, you’re ready to try shattering Dominic’s family like it’s never been shattered before. And with the first Fast X sequel cooking in the labs of Universal, it’s only a matter of time before Momoa graces us with Dante at least one more time.