Normally a first weekend’s box office numbers judge whether or not the film is a success and if it deserves a sequel. Some films don’t get the latter despite being a success, but for the ones that do get sequels, they can expand to a franchise. The Fast and Furious franchise has been doing that for seven installments already. Even though this past weekend’s Furious 7 grossed $392 million worldwide, Universal has yet to confirm if there will be a Fast and Furious 8.
This may have to do with just taking a break from everything that has happened with the production of the film and finding a story. Hit the jump for more details.
Days before the premiere, Fast and Furious franchise star Vin Diesel talked about how he envisioned the films in advance and as trilogies. He hinted that Fast and Furious 8 could possibly head to New York. There are also rumors of Eva Mendes reprising her role – she was last seen in a cameo in Fast Five. Helen Mirren has even expressed interest in starring as a villain in the sequel.
None of that is confirmed as of yet, possibly because the cast and crew are taking a break.
Here’s what producer Neil Moritz told The Hollywood Reporter in an interview,
Honestly, weâ€™re just bathing in the success of [Furious 7]. Weâ€™ll probably get together in a week or so to talk.
When it comes down to finding a reason to make a sequel, it all comes down to the story, and here is what Moritz had to say about that,
“[The story] is going to have to be something enticing for all of us. It has to be as good as or better [than Furious 7].”
There are a lot of other contingencies to consider as well. The site reports that the contracts for the actors have all expired, so new ones would have to be renegotiated. Dwayne Johnson‘s contract is exceptionally different because his are on a film-by-film basis. The actor first joined the franchise in Fast Five, and had a reduced role in Furious 7 – he shot his scenes in 10 days.
Then there is the issue of finding a director. James Wan will be directing The Conjuring 2 for New Line Cinema/Warner Brothers. Some are speculating that if the film is a success, he will be offered to direct a DC Comics film. Justin Lin, who has been with the franchise from Tokyo Drift to Fast and Furious 6, will be busy directing Star Trek 3 for Paramount. Chances are that when Universal does confirm a sequel, they will be making offers to other people.
Universal say they have plans to release Fast and Furious 8, 9, and 10, although we don’t know how much of an impact the tragic passing of Paul Walker had on the franchise. It is expected that the studio will give an update or maybe a confirmation on Fast and Furious 8 as soon as this month during CinemaCon in Las Vegas.