Justin Lin Won’t Direct FAST & FURIOUS 7; Universal Hoping for 2014 Release

     April 4, 2013

justin lin slice

Though Fast & Furious 6 doesn’t come out until next month, we’ve known for some time that Universal plans on moving forward with a seventh installment in the franchise.  Fast Five director Justin Lin initially mulled over the idea of shooting Fast 6 and 7 back-to-back, but instead opted to shoot the Europe-set Fast & Furious 6 separately.  Last week franchise star Vin Diesel suggested that filming on Fast & Furious 7 was set to get underway as early as this summer, and since that kind of schedule would necessitate a very quick turnaround from the cast and crew, most surmised that Lin would be returning as the director.

However, today word comes that Lin has decided not to direct Fast & Furious 7 after all, which would have marked his fifth film in the series.  Hit the jump for much more.

fast-and-furious-7-vin-diesel-paul-walker-justin-linPer THR, Lin informed studio execs late last night that he will not be returning to direct the seventh Fast & Furious film.  Universal wants to get things moving on Fast 7 as quickly as possible and was hoping the pic would be ready for a 2014 release, and as a result Lin “felt the rush would not result in his best work.”  Lin—who first burst onto the scene with his 2002 Sundance hit Better Luck Tomorrow—has helmed a total of four films in the franchise thus far, including Tokyo Drift, Fast & Furious, Fast Five, and Fast & Furious 6, and series exhaustion is also said to be a factor in his decision.

Lin has a number of interesting films on his development slate that he can choose from for his next project, including the sci-fi thriller Hibernation, an action-thriller adaptation of an upcoming Patrick Lee novel for Warner Bros., the manga adaptation Lone Wolf and Cub, the racially-charged drama L.A. Riots, and an adaptation of the play Chinglish.  Though I’m a big fan of Lin’s work with Fast Five, I’d be interested to see him tackle something smaller and more dramatic as his Fast 6 follow-up.

vin-diesel-fast-furious-7The report notes that there’s no animosity between Lin and the studio or his castmembers, and it appears that he left the series on amicable terms.  Universal still wants to get Fast & Furious 7 on track for a summer 2014 release, so they are now on the hunt for another director with a decision expected as early as next week.  Fast Five’s global box office haul of $626 million is indeed a major factor in the studio’s planning for the next sequel, but hopefully the rush doesn’t result in a half-assed tentpole.  One year is a very short time period in which to prep, shoot, and edit a major studio film, and there are also the intricate set pieces and stunts to factor in as well.

A recent spoilery rumor about the ending of Fast & Furious 6 (do not click if you don’t want to know) gives us an idea of where the series is headed for the next film, so hopefully Universal ropes in a talented filmmaker with an interesting vision for the franchise.  Fast 6 takes the characters into more of a heist-oriented direction rather than the street racing theme of the previous films, so we can reasonably expect that Universal will continue that route with Fast 7. 

What about you, dear readers?  Who do you think should step in and direct the next Fast & Furious movie?


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  • dodoriz

    Well it originally sounded like Fast 7 would be the best one yet with the inclusion of Statham but they better not give us a half-assed cash grab.

    • Hiro

      That sounds like exactly what audiences are going to get, particularly if the studio sticks to that release schedule.

    • HeSaidSheSaidReviewSite

      I cannot comprehend this idea that they just keep getting better and better as they go on. I do not understand you “Fast” and “Furious” fans. I don’t dislike all the movies either, but you diehards are equally as excited about each chapter and I do not comprehend that.

      • dodoriz

        I was a big fan of the first, didnt care for part 2, never saw part 3. When 5 was coming out, it seemed cool so I watched part 4, it was alright but I thought that Fast Five was amazing. And as a big fan of action films, hearing Jason Statham was coming to the franchise obviously I would be ecstatic but now its sounding like it will be a mess.

  • Matt

    Who are we kidding, we all know that Brett Ratner is going to do it.

    • Matt

      I guess he might be busy with Hercules though. Maybe Kim Ji-woon.

      • chanandeler

        The last stand guy? How did you land on his name?

      • Matt

        I tried to think of somebody who would fit and could come on quick. It was either him or Louis Leterrier.

  • Marlboroliteman

    Hopefully the next director continues Lin’s Brokeback Mountain on wheels vision. Will Dom and Brian finally hook up? The sexual tension between the two in the last film was at an all time high. Brian has given up everything to be with Dom and now Hobbs seems to have fallen under Dom’s spell. It’s an interesting love triangle that problaby won’t get resolved until “Fast and Furious 7: Dom Juan’s Revenge”, but the build up leading to Dom and Brian’s first kiss which is rumored to occur in “Fast 6: Dom and Brian’s First Kiss” has been fun to watch.

    • Marlboroliteman

      Rewatching Fast 5 I realized the big fight between Dom and Hobbs wasn’t just a physical fight…….for Dom it was a battle about staying loyal to Brian and his feelings for him.  That fight is a brilliant metaphor of Dom fighting off his lustful feelings for Hobbs and his tight shirt. 
      Dom fought hard with Hobbs for his love of Brian who he knows gave up everything for his love of Dom.

    • Jimmy

      I really wish they went the Ameican Dad route with it!

  • Marlboroliteman

    John Cameron Mitchell would be the logical choice for directing Fast 7. 
    It’s an exciting prospect having Mitchell direct especially if they add Statham to the cast, his character would add an interesting dynamic to the Dom, Brian, and Hobbs love triangle.

  • Robert

    I would like to see a F&F film by Zach Snyder

  • Snacks

    I enjoy a lot of Statham movies. Liked Expendables. Expendables II was absolute trash. Statham should opt out of Expendables III to keep his career going.

    At first I thought it was cool that he is signed for F&F 7. The fights between him and Diesel would be cool. Martial art guy vs. the Dominator. As long as they don’t go the route that Expendables II went, then this can work.

    F & F just needs great stories. No need to always bring in big names as long as stories work. One year…. does not seem like enough time to execute something great, though maybe they are already set with the story and only need to film it. Just don’t ruin a good thing. 1, 2, 4, and 5 are fun movies. I do like the style of the way the original director film it. Maybe John Singleton can come back for # 7?

  • Adam

    They should get Michael Bay, Transformers 2 was awful, as well as the first half of Transformers 3, but the guy is an incredible action director.

  • Snacks

    Michael Bay as director. .. I agree. His take on F & F could bring new fun to the action scenes.

  • Drake

    Rob Cohen, John Singleton, or Michael Bay….and for the 7th they should go back to La,with Vin Diesel ending up in Tokyo at the end…hint, hint Drifters

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