I think at some point the writers of the Fast and the Furious franchise are going to have to cut the words “one last ride” out of their scripts. After all, if you’re just going to keep on releasing new entries into your franchise, you might as well stop pretending that the next job Vin Diesel and co. accept will be the last. For a while it seemed like Furious 7 was going to be the final installment, with the movie ending on a surprisingly touching farewell montage for Paul Walker in the wake of his tragic death. However, it seems that Fast 8 will not only continue to up the list of insane car stunts the franchise is now famous for, but also expand the ever-growing roster of badass cast members as well. Already they have acquired Charlize Theron (Mad Max Fury Road) to star as the primary antagonist and now Helen Mirren has revealed to be on board for the movie a well, possibly one of Theron’s associates.
Having expressed her desire to star in the FatF franchise in the past, Mirren revealed in an interview with Elle Magazine that she is set to have a role in the next upcoming film. “I’ve always rather loved driving,” Mirren responded to Elle, “ I said, ‘I’ll be in it, but only if I’m allowed to drive if I do drive in it.’ But we’ll see. We’ll see how it transpires.” Mirren previously starred in the British thriller film Eye in the Sky, in which she starred as Colonel Katherine Powell, a British military commander tasked with a top secret drone operation in Kenya. The film was released in European cinemas last September but saw a limited release in America this March, where it earned a robust $18 million at the North American box office.
Personally, I’m pretty excited to see what Mirren’s role will be in this film, partially because Helen Mirren is awesome and partially because the Fast and the Furious films have really proven their worth over the past couple years. Originally starting off as a cheesy Point Break-esque film featuring fast cars, the franchise has come to embrace its rather insane setup post-Fast Five, gradually turning out a slew of entertaining summer action flicks that manage to defy even traditional action movie logic. Not only that, it has also created an ensemble cast of actors who not only are extremely badass, but feel diverse in both ethnicity and gender, something that our industry is still struggling to accomplish at times. The plot for this film hasn’t been announced yet, but as long as the plot McGuffin allows an excuse for insane car stunts, I think audiences will be satisfied.
Fast 8 is set for a release of April 14th, 2017. Odds are it won’t be the last ride.