Vin Diesel has one of the biggest social media presences on the web. Over the years, the Fast and Furious mainstay has maintained an active and interactive Facebook account, regularly chatting with his fans and offering updates. Along the way, he’s amassed over 100,000,000 subscribers, and in honor of the power of “Vin Book”, the folks at the social media platform recently gifted the actor with an award to celebrate his subscriber benchmark. In return, Diesel dropped a live video to thank his fanbase, or “community” as he likes to call it, and look back on the ways they’ve shaped his films.
Turns out one of those ways was landing Dwayne Johnson in the fan-favorite role of Agent Luke Hobbs, which Diesel reveals was originally written for…Tommy Lee Jones. Now that is quite the re-write.
Here’s what Diesel said,
“Back in the fifth film, when I was asking ‘Who should I work with?’ The reason why we brought Dwayne Johnson into Fast Five was because of you. There was a girl named Jen Kelly who said, ‘I would love to see you guys work together on-screen.’ And so, we gave a role that was initially written for Tommy Lee Jones but we gave it to Dwayne, and he shined in it.”
As far as changes go, that’s a pretty massive one. Johnson’s Agent Hobbs has been a formative part of the Fast and Furious franchise ever since the saga underwent a soft reboot in the franchise-best Fast 5. It’s almost impossible to imagine what Hobbs role would have been with Jones in the part, but one imagines there would be less fist fights with Dom Torretto.
In the video, Diesel also credits the his Facebook fanbase with convincing the studio to bring Michelle Rodrigeuz‘s Letty back from the dead, and inspiring him to reach out to Jason Statham for the role of Deckard Shaw. “Wait ’til you see him in Fast 8,” he teased. “He’s really pretty amazing in it.” This is the very same video in which Diesel casually dropped the confirmation that he and the Guardians of the Galaxy are set to appear in Avengers: Infinity War.
Hobbs will turn up next in Fast 8 alongside Charlize Theron, Tyrese Gibson, Chris “Ludacris” Bridges, Dwayne Johnson, Scott Eastwood, and Nathalie Emmanuel. The film opens in theaters everywhere on April 14, 2017.
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