Paul Walker would not want the “Fast & Furious” franchise to end after “Fast & Furious 7” comes out next year, said fellow star Tyrese Gibson.
Walker was in the middle of filming the seventh installment of the film when he died in a fiery car crash in Southern California in November. There was discussion to shelve the movie after his death but studio executives decided to resume shooting the movie, and reports say Walker’s character, Brian O’Conner, will be retired. The Hollywood Reporter also reported that the movie will resume shooting in April 2014 and will go on for eight weeks.
Speaking with Queen Latifah on Monday, Gibson said, “We (the cast) just want y’all to know that Paul was so passionate about Fast & the Furious. There’s no way he would want the (Fast & the Furious) franchise to shut down because the movie is successful for a reason.”
He added, “If you all could just show up and look at somebody in the movie that you identify with… the global impact of the movie must continue on behalf of the franchise.”
Gibson also said he was grateful for the condolences and well-wishing after Walker died.
“Thank you all for all your prayers and energy that you all sent towards the family as well as us (the cast). A lot of times we take people praying for us for granted. But we have been able to find our smile again and kind of have our spirits come up after losing someone that we all adored. We adored Paul Walker. He was just a great guy,” Gibson said.
On Sunday, the Academy Awards paid tribute to Walker, who was 40 when he died, in his traditional In Memoriam. Oscar winner Philip Seymour Hoffman, who died last month, and “Sopranos” star James Gandolfini were also honored.
When Walker died, Universal Studios halted production and said at the time: “Right now, all of us at Universal are dedicated to providing support to Paul’s immediate family and our extended Fast & Furious family of cast, crew and filmmakers.”
“At this time we feel it is our responsibility to shut down production on Fast & Furious 7 for a period of time so we can assess all options available to move forward with the franchise,” it continued.
In January, actor Kurt Russell–who will have a role in “Fast & Furious 7”–said that film’s rewriting is “catastrophic” after Walker died.
“They’re having to rewrite, they’re having to do whatever they’re having to do to deal with the situation,” Russell said, according to the BBC. “It’s catastrophic. It’s the worst thing that could happen to a movie.”
He added that “it’s not as bad as what happened to Paul.”
“So everything is in perspective,” he said. “He was a terrific guy. And life is full of curveballs.It’s just a situation that they’ll work out and, at that time, I’ll go back to work.”
Russell said that he had only “one day left” of filming before Walker’s death. “”I don’t know what is going to happen with that. It’s obviously a difficult situation,” he said.
The veteran actor also didn’t know what would happen to Walker’s character.
“Whether or not this guy dies off in the movie, we don’t know. That may have changed now significantly too,” he said.