As reported by That Hashtag Show, the franchise regulars Michelle Rodriguez and Tyrese Gibson will be back in Fast & Furious 9. They are the first two cast members who have reportedly signed for the sequel to be produced by Universal Studios and it is expected to start filming in April.
There are some fans, who would be surprised to see Rodriguez and Gibson return. Both had earlier threatened to leave the franchise. IN 2017, Rodriguez, who plays the role of Letty Ortiz had shared on Instagram that she was set to leave the franchise if the way it dealt with female characters doesn’t improve.
“F8 is out digitally today, I hope they decided to show some love to the women of the franchise on the next one,” Rodriguez had posted at the time. “Or I just might have to say goodbye to a loved franchise. It’s been a good ride [and] I’m grateful for the opportunity the fans [and] studio have provided over the years… One Love.”
In September 2017, she repeated these concerns during an interview, although, she observed that she was yet to see any script for the ninth movie. As far as Gibson’s apprehensions are concerned, they were due to issues with his co-star Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson starring in a Fast & Furious spinoff movie, Hobbs & Shaw that is based on his character Luke Hobbs and Jason Statham’s Deckard Shaw. By the looks of it, the concerns voiced by Rodriguez and Gibson have been properly handled, and the path is clear for them to return.
The Fast & Furious movies have been a great performer for Universal. In 2009, Fast & Furious earned $1.5 billion globally while the latest movie from the franchise, Fate of the Furious also succeeded at the box office, earning a worldwide amount of $1.2 billion.
Although these are just formative days for Fast & Furious 9, and the film won’t be in theatres until April 2020, the Hobbs & Shaw movie has finished filming in London and fans were given the movie’s first look courtesy of a photo of the titular Hobbs and Shaw courtesy of Entertainment Weekly.
“When you have a franchise that is as successful as the Fast & Furious franchise, the goal, certainly my goal, was always to try and create a scenario where we have as much longevity as we possibly can have,” Johnson said. “And in that spirit, you have to evolve, and you have to spin off, and you have to create new characters and new stories, especially when you’re coming off Fast 8, where you have an eight at the end of your title. [Laughs.] And while that one was wildly successful as well, we all collectively felt, myself, Jason Statham, the studio, all right, now’s the time, let’s make our move. So it’s been pretty surreal, but it’s also been a lot of fun and pretty exciting.”
Fast & Furious 9 is slated to release in April 2020. Hobbs & Shaw has a release date of August 2, 2019.