Despite the fact that the new Fast X filming has already started, its director Justin Lin has left the set stating that he will no longer be directing the tenth installment of the Fast and Furious franchise.
Lin said his reason for leaving was due to “creative differences”. The director who co-wrote Fast X with Dan Mazeau said,
”With the support of Universal, I have made the difficult decision to step back as director of Fast X while remaining with the project as a producer.
”Over 10 years and five films, we have been able to shoot the best actors, the best stunts, and the best damn car chases. On a personal note, as the child of Asian immigrants, I am proud of helping build the most diverse franchise in movie history,” said the director in statement explaining his departure.
Meanwhile production of the film will come to a standstill as replacements for Lin are considered.
Lin’s involvement with the Fast & Furious franchise started with The Fast & Furious: Tokyo Drift in 2006. He then went on to direct four more installments in 2009, 2011, 2013 and 2021.
His contribution to the franchise includes introducing the fan-favourite character Han in Tokyo Drift and reuniting the core cast in the follow up film. Lin’s work on the fifth and sixth installment helped make the franchise a cultural mainstay.
Fast X will see the return of franchise favourites such as Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriquez, Sung Kang, Ludacris and Tyrese Gibson with new additions like Brie Larson and Jason Momoa who plays a villain. Charlize Theron will also return as Cipher the cyber terrorist.
Though the franchise has seen ups and downs of late, it remains profitable with Fast & Furious 9 raking in $700 million at the global box office despite being released during the height of the pandemic.
The friction that has caught the most attention in the media is the feud between Vin Diesel and Dwayne Johnson. The two action heroes have exchanged harsh words in social media captions and interview quotes although Vin Diesel did try to get Johnson to put aside their differences and return for the final installment.
This altercation has also fueled rumours that issues with Diesel and Lin could have caused Lin’s exit.