With eight core films, one spin-off, and an animated series under its belt, Universal’s Fast & Furious franchise revving up for its ninth instalment of the Fast family’s ridiculous story about how a group of street racers ended up becoming…superheroes, more or less, whose abilities all revolve around being real good at making cars go fast.
Because each of the Fast films has, in some way, raised the stakes in order to keep things interesting, the logical assumption’s been that F9 would have to get particularly wild given how bonkers the previous eight films have been. We’ve seen Fast characters essentially hurl cars at one another, fight a technologically-empowered Superman, and race a submarine, and so it stands to reason that Universal approached F9 knowing that it’d have to get particularly creative to make the film feel fresh.
Of course, the idea on everyone’s minds has been space, because what is a rocket really, if not a very expensive car that flies up into the sky? (Note: a rocket is not actually a car that flies, but the Fast franchise’s relationship with reality has always been tenuous at best.) In a recent interview with Sirius XM’s The Jess Cagle Show, actor/rapper Ludacris, who’s appeared in a number of Fast films as Tej Parker, sat down to talk vaguely about Fast 9, which was initially supposed to premiere this year before the coronavirus pandemic threw a wrench into production plans.
Though Ludacris didn’t provide any clear details about what to expect from the film, when the show’s co-host Julie Cunningham briefly brought up the idea of the franchise turning its focus skyward and beyond, he responded by saying that Cunningham was “very intuitive” noted that she’d said something “very important” in regards to where Fast 9 goes. In the same breath, Cunningham had also brought up submarines, and when she pressed Ludacris pointing out that she’d explicitly brought up space, he clammed up and left things there.
If you’re reading Gizmodo, then you know by now the song and dance that performers play in the months leading up the the releases of their latest Hollywood blockbusters. An actor shows up on a show, says something they “not supposed to say,” and then fandom focused on whatever the project in question is spends a few weeks if not longer hypothesising how to interpret the performers purposefully cryptic (though sometimes less cryptic) statements.
Until Universal drops a trailer in which the Rock hurls a rocket in which Vin Diesel is strapped to the pilot’s seat into space, there’s no way of knowing whether Dominic Toretto and his family are going to get a chance to dance among the stars, nice as the idea would be. For now, all we can do is dream.
F9 is set to hit U.S. theatres April 2, 2021.