The ninth chapter of the Fast saga, F9, arrives this weekend in North America, just as it continues to make a killing with earnings of well over $293 million dollars, internationally. With that, the trajectory is a hopeful one that stands pretty tall for Universal Pictures who have long since plotted a course for there to be a decalogy of films, now with word that the tenth installment, according to franchise star and producer Vin Diesel will shoot the next film in two parts beginning in January.
I had an eye on actor Vin Diesel to possibly headline a Street Sharks movie based on a promo he did many years ago in the nascency of his TV career. Alas, that never came to pass, though given his penchant for gargantuan blockbuster productions that aim really high on concept, you can imagine he would attach himself to the guy who invested in The Rock befriending an oversized Silverback gorilla as they battled monsters in between city streets and buildings for movie of their own… and that’s what he’s gone and did.And that’s why we now get to talk about Universal Pictures and its latest stake in a film adaptation of Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em Robots, based on the classic 1966 tabletop boxing game which pitted Red Rocker against Blue Bomber in a fight to knock his rival’s block off; A staple in pop culture since its debut, the brand’s bright and bold gameplay has appeared in films, television shows and commercials over the past five decades.Diesel is set to star from a script by Rampage scribe Ryan Engle “which follows a father and son who form an unlikely bond with an advanced war machine”. The actor will also produce with Samantha Vincent via One Race Films, and with producer Mattel Films whose Kevin McKeon will spearhead for the company.
I think it’s safe to say that the Fast And Furious film franchise has been a career defining one for actor Vin Diesel, who also has a stake in producing the film series since 2009’s The Fast And The Furious: Tokyo Drift.
F9 Official Trailer: Charlize Is Back, Han Is Back, The Big Ass Stunts Are Back, John Cena Emerges, And My Brain Is Done
Okay, so it turns out the official title from Universal Pictures is F9. The trailer launch on Friday makes that all but clear, on top of at least one other major reveal, now confirmed and much to the delight of anyone who has heard the rumor.
The first official teaser poster is live for the ninth installment of Universal’s five-billion dollar success story, The Fast Saga. The poster comes ahead of the first trailer which arrives on Friday after 3pm EST/12pm PST, following a star-studded concert billed as ‘The Road To F9’.
You’d have to see it to believe it, as this is the first look at Netflix‘s forthcoming animated series, Fast & Furious: Spy Racers. The teaser just screened on Wednesday among others for a raft of upcoming shows over at Annecy International Animated Film Festival in Annecy, France.
It appears Universal is steadfast on testing the shelflife of the long-running Fast saga since landing in 2001 with Rob Cohen at the helm. Eighteen years, eight films and well over $5.1 billion dollars at the box office later, the franchise has rewarded itself by entering spin-off territory with now two titles forthwith.
Fans looking to tune into something or anything Vin Diesel-related can now pan over to new photos being released teasing the actor’s incarnation of Valiant Comics’ supersoldier, Bloodshot. Diesel will be on hand on Thursday alongside fellow Fast And Furious cohorts Tyrese Gibson and Sung Kang and Reach Out WorldWide CEO Cody Walker for the fourth annual fundraising event.
Production on the fourth installment of the xXx franchise is still months away as Vin Diesel remains on the set of his latest thriller, Bloodshot. The aforementioned franchise title, currently home at Paramount following a rousing third installment release last January has D.J. Caruso on board to helm once more and with word that TF Boys member Roy Wang is slated to star as of last week.
D.J. Caruso is returning to direct the butt-kicking hell out of a fourth installment to the xXx franchise according to multiple trade sources running online. The news comes in addition with the word that The H Collective and Vin Diesel’s One Race Films have acquired the rights to the franchise with Diesel expected to star once more as well as produce.
Diesel launched the xXx franchise next to the growth of Universal Pictures’s The Fast And The Furious whose director, Rob Cohen, helmed the inaugural 2002 film from Columbia Pictures. Ice Cube would replace the actor for its 2005 sequel from Lee Tamahori twelve years before Diesel would return to the role last year headlining with a sprawling cast of heavy hitters that additionally featured Donnie Yen, Tony Jaa, Ruby Rose and Michael Bisping to name a few, as well as a cameo by Cube himself for a Paramount release.
“During my time at Paramount I was lucky to be involved in the development and distribution of xXx: Return of Xander Cage.” says H Collective CEO Nic Crawley in a statement. “The response from the Chinese box office was unprecedented. Bringing the next installment of the xXx franchise to The H Collective complements our diversified slate and mission to produce content for a global audience.”
The deal also allows Revolution Studios to retain its rights to the first three films.
The H Collective is partnering with Jackie Chan’s Sparkle Roll Media, HCH Media, Dadi Cinema, and Angeleno Studio to finance the fourth installment which is expected to go before cameras in December. Joe Roth and Jeff Kirschenbaum are also producing along with One Race’s Samantha Vincent, and The H Collective.
Diesel is currently preparing for the summer start of production for Valiant Comics adaptation, Bloodshot while Caruso’s own recent headline activity saw him circle projects including G.I. Joe 3 and Jason Statham thriller, Killer’s Game.
THRILLED to finally reveal that we've acquired the rights to the xXx franchise! Prepare for @VinDiesel to blast back onto your screens as Xander Cage!!!A post shared by The H Collective (@thcfilm) on Apr 17, 2018 at 5:33pm PDT
Actor Vin Diesel is still brewing a return to the Fast lane for Universal with at least two films to go. Apart from this, it was back in January that word arose of his name circling the title role of debut helmer Dave Wilson’s Valiant adaptation, Bloodshot, adjoining the actor with another prolific comic book IP since attaining Marvel’s “Groot” in Marvel’s Guardians Of The Galaxy.
It was this week, however, that Deadline’s report cites an official deal in writing for Sony Pictures production hailing as one of a raft of films encompassing a cinematic universe based on the Valiant comic book series. Wilson, a long time collaborator with Deadpool creator Tim Miller, is helming from a script Oscar-nominated Arrival scribe Eric Heisserer which Mike Fleming Jr. and Patrick Hipes at Deadline are saying will deliver in similar tone to that of classic R-Rated 1980s tentpoles like Robocop, Terminator and Total Recall.
Sony is moving forward with principal photography starting in July with Fast saga producer Neal H. Moritz producing with Toby Jaffe and Dinesh Shamdasani. Matthew Vaughn and Dan Mintz are executive producing with Andrea Giannetti overseeing for Sony.
per Deadline with a word on the origins of the character:
Bloodshot is a central character in the Valiant Expanded Universe, composed of thousands of characters embodying various genres, tones and demographic groups — ordinary people in extraordinary situations rather than gods and demi-gods.
The Bloodshot series, comprised of more 110 issues with more than 7.5 million copies sold, centers on Ray Garrison, aka Bloodshot. Brought back from the dead by Rising Spirit Technologies through the use of nanotechnology and suffering total memory loss, Ray struggles to reconnect with who he was while learning what sort of weapon he has become, with the help of a group of other augmented combatants (called Chainsaw).
Diesel is repped by CAA and Brillstein Entertainment Partners with Wilson by ICM Partners and 3 Arts, and Heiserer by WME.
Plans for the next installment of the Vin Diesel-led xXx action film franchise are already being cooked after winning big globally earlier this year $346 million dollars with xXx: The Return Of Xander Cage at Paramount. The creative details remain pending but its confirmation otherwise comes in part with the larger initiative hailed by the launch of new film production and financing firm, The H Collective.
As The Wrap reports, veteran producers Sid Ganis, Nancy Hult Ganis, Mark Johnson, Joe Roth and Jeff Kirschenbaum are shepherding the new company with the new xXx as the first of a raft of titles to produce, market and distribute. The fledgeling company will finance the pic with Roth and Kirschenbaum producing and with all company rights acquired – excluding TV and U.S. theme park rights, as well as domestic distribution rights to select content.
The firm finance an average of four films annually through 2021 with varying budgets and categories, and has an exclusive partnership with Beijing Culture platforming its North and South American rights to three films for which it will handle distribution and marketing, namely including Wu Jing’s Wolf Warrior 2 which opens in China next month, as well as Ding Sheng’s A Better Tomorrow 4 and Xiao Yang’s upcoming fantasy romance adventure, Hanson And The Beast.
“I’m extremely happy to be part of The H Collective family from the beginning,” Ganis said in a statement. “The company has a great understanding of motion picture investment and an eye for quality productions.”
Roth added, “In today’s Hollywood, it requires strong partners to produce and finance such big-budget movies as the ‘xXx’ series, and The H Collective is a welcome and exciting new company that we look forward to working with.”
“The H Collective has proposed a very clever and original model for making films of all sizes and shapes, and at all price levels,” Johnson said. “We are excited with the challenge of making diverse and arresting films for today’s global audience.”
Further included in The H Collective’s package are the following:
• Three Sisters — Ruby Rose (“XXx: Return of Xander Cage”) stars in this action comedy with Timur Bekmambetov (“Wanted”) directing a script by Derek Haas (“Wanted”). Roth and Kirschnbuam will produce
• A Children’s Song — When two students competing for a music scholarship discover that their original compositions are based on a single family song, both are determined to prove ownership, leading them to uncover the long lost true origin of the melody: a story of salvation and hope when over 20,000 Jews immigrated to Shanghai during WWII. The film will be produced by Sid Ganis and Nancy Hult Ganis.
• Raven Road — After a friend dies in mysterious circumstances on a deserted stretch of road made famous by urban legend, a group of investigate the myth. Brian Anderson scripted the horror-thriller, which Johnson will produce.
• White House Chef — A Chinese chef working in the White House must save the first family after he becomes unintentionally involved in a secret terrorist plot targeting an important state dinner. Johnson is producing the action-comedy.
• The Parts You Lose — When a young deaf boy comes across a wounded man in a snowdrift, he moves him to a nearby barn and helps nurse him back to health. Before long, it becomes clear how dangerous this man is, and the unlikely friendship that develops between the two may have grave consequences. Aaron Paul (“Breaking Bad“) is attached to star, and Johnson will produce.
I’ve spent my fair share of time fawning over Universal Pictures’s Fast franchise. However, in the wake of having seen its newest installation, F. Gary Gray’s The Fate Of The Furious, I think I’ve grown past the fandom a bit. That’s not to suggest that I’m exhausted from the franchise – I’m excited to see how it proceeded after Furious Seven, and I can’t wait to see what lies for the final two titles.
I do feel left a little short on a the film’s ending on top of other things. I know it sounds nitpicky, but I did stay for the entirety of the end credits and sadly, there’s nothing after all of the explosive action and thrills and compelling plot twists. That said, the rest of the movie doesn’t disappoint in terms of said explosive action, thrills and twists and especially if you’ve been following the franchise since it began in 2001.
The trailers did an exceptionally fantastic job at misleading everyone with as many ruses as possible, even though you know Dom Torretto (Vin Diesel) has his reasons for doing what he does. His actions performed on the count of cyberterrorist, Cypher (Charlize Theron) are the ultimate test of mettle for our ‘Fast Family’ with Letty (Michelle Rodriguez), Roman (Tyrese Gibson), Tej (Christopher Bridges), Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) and newest addition, Ramsey (Nathalie Emmanuelle) now forced to team up with their latest frenemy, Decard Shaw (Jason Statham) to stop Dom and Cypher by any means necessary.
The trepidating adventure spans the world from Cuba and Berlin to New York City and Russia as the team fight to not only stop Cypher from building a nuclear arsenal, but to hopefully save Dom from whatever has driven him from his team. The film explores this end of the plot in a most appealing way for fans and pays homage with great depth to the film’s continued focus on family with respect to its characters, living and departed.
In its succession, the film does plenty of what its supposed to do in terms of filling certain gaps left by the last film. Chris Morgan’s script runs nothing short on the levity we see continued amid the jabs from many of our supporting characters, including Scott Eastwood who plays second to Kurt Russell’s Mr. Nobody from the seventh installment, whose connection to Hobbs was mentioned only once but we now get to see in bloom. The same can be said for the love story between Dom and Letty, back in their element as a couple and their faith tested once more per the film’s plot.
Theron’s portrayal of the film’s menacing cybervillain does come across as a bit phoned in as some critics have suggested, though equally better than her other acting counterparts. That said, while the film doesn’t exactly bode well in the Oscar category for drama depending on who you’ve got your eye on, the film’s solid staple is its narrative centered on family – the most important takeaway from the movie if you’re a fan of the franchise and you’re already long so appealed and attached to the characters that you want to see more.
The biggest letdown is the lack of a post-credit scene given how the film plays out which lends even more to the franchise’s uncertainty. As much as it sucks, it could be a good thing so as to keep from spoiling fans too much, although I think this will ultimately be determined by what will lie ahead for the next film’s campaign, and provided that fans still care about the franchise.
This was a slightly greater concern for me than the suspense standing from a lack of resolve the film’s two biggest stars after all said and done which could be due to some interesring headlines in the past year, or, say, the hat trick the film pulls in presenting an otherwise supporting character in Statham’s Decard Shaw after his more nefarious contributions to the previous movie from James Wan; I personally still can’t wrap my head around it, but his addition no less makes the film just as interesting and fun next to the overall ridiculousness.
The next installment isn’t set to arrive until 2019 which ought to leave plenty of time for Universal Pictures to get right what it needs to between finding the next director, as well as weaving together what needs weaving for the ninth movie to make the sense it needs to. A lot happens in The Fate Of The Furious, especially with the inclusion of actress Dame Helen Mirren in what is expected to be a recurring role from here on out, that will leave you amazed, surprised, delighted and even in total shock, and one can only hope that the next helmer can offer something with a bit more emotional resonance to bookend the automotive destruction and epic, balls-to-the-wall action that sells tickets.
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