September 12 would have been Paul Walker’s birthday, and his onscreen partner and real-life pal Vin Diesel isn’t one to forget a birthday. The actor took to social media to bring attention to the day and to direct address his pal about what is going on with Fast and Furious 9.
In his post, Vin Diesel talks about filming the latest movie in Scotland, as well as spending time together with the cast and crew. Newcomer to the franchise John Cena is mentioned, as is Paul Walker’s daughter Meadow, who has also made it a mission to keep Paul Walker in people’s thoughts in recent years.
It’s hard to believe that Paul Walker would’ve been 46 today, were it not for the unfortunate accident that took his life alongside his friend Roger Rodas following an event for his charity Reach Out Worldwide. Each year, we get older and the cast of the Fast and Furious movies get older, yet Paul Walker stays the same youthful 40 in our minds. Yet, thanks to his family and friends, it’s clear he won’t soon be forgotten.
In a lot of ways, The Fast and Furious franchise has become what it is only due to Paul Walker’s death. Sure, there was a resurgence in the popularity of the film Franchise after Fast Five; however, when Paul Walker died, the fact that his family rallied to get Furious 7 made even after Paul Walker passing became a big rallying point for the franchise.
The narrative that accompanied that film was one of sadness but also of solidarity and family, and it sort of fit in really well with what the Fast and Furious movies have been about over the years. Furious 7 even ended with a tribute to Paul Walker after his character, Brian, left to be with his family.
In the time since, The Fate of the Furious was released, and now the cast and crew are back on set and filming the still untitled Fast & Furious 9, which will hit theaters next spring. They took some time out yesterday, however, to pay tribute to the late actor. Vin wasn’t the only one to mention Paul Walker on social media, either, as popular franchise director Justin Lin also posted a fond memory he had with the actor, also noted that he misses him, but knows he “continue[s] to be with us on our journey.”
Finally, Jordana Brewster, whose character exited the series along with Paul Walker’s but who will be back for this next installation, also shared birthday wishes for the late actor. Her lovely post also fondly mentions a nickname she used to call Walker that he hated.
Fast and Furious 9 began filming back in June, ahead of the flick’s May 22, 2020 release date. Justin Lin is back helming the movie, which was initially pushed back in the theatrical schedule to make room for Hobbs & Shaw, which made its debut earlier in 2019. Although there was a delay, we can finally start getting excited about the ninth movie in the franchise, and we’ll be sure to keep you updated along the way.