With Furious 7 now in theaters and breaking April box office records left, right and center, director James Wan has had the opportunity to look back on the troubled production with the benefit of hindsight. Speaking to ScreenCrush, the filmmaker touched upon the sequel’s surprising SXSW debut, coming to the franchise as a newcomer, and how he approached this latest installment as though it were simply another horror film for him to hone and craft.
For Wan, this was his means of infusing Furious 7 with his own genre sensibilities, lending the action-oriented series a tangible, thrilling slant. And though the preposterous plane stunt was already part of the script when he signed on, the director had plenty of creative room to add his own nail-biting moments into the project.
I’m glad you picked that up. That’s the one thing I could really put my stamp on. The action stuff. When I came on board, the whole concept of dropping cars out of the back of a plane was already conceived but then it was up to me to execute it and make it as thrilling as I could. To give you an example, the very first action beat I designed was the armored bus teetering on the edge of the cliff and Paul has to jump over and climb onto the roof as the whole thing is falling off the edge. That is what I brought to this film. That kind of stuff was what I really wanted to do. Some of that horror/thriller suspense to an action movie.
So, now that Furious 7 has proved to be a bona fide hit, what’s next for Wan? Further in the interview, the director revealed that despite the heartbreak of Paul Walker’s death and the emotional ramifications it had, he would still be happy to return for the seemingly set in stone Fast and Furious 8. But there’s another project simmering in Wan’s mind at the moment that goes by the name The Conjuring 2, which is already making steady progress.
Basically, the amazing thing about the Warrens is, they have thousands of cases they investigated. The idea of doing another story from their case files just feels very organic. For this next one, it’s set in England and it has a very different vibe than the first movie. It still lives in the same world, but the location and the next case they have, has a different flavor to it. So I’m very excited.
Furious 7 is in theaters right now and to prep for Wan’s maiden entry into the petrolhead series, be sure to check out our own review.