What the hell is going on between Dwayne and Vin? Do we need to set up a Rock vs Diesel match at Wrestlemania now? Is Fast 9 in trouble?
I’m sure most of you have heard all the noise going around about Dwayne (The Rock) Johnson and Vin (InVincible) Diesel having so-called philosophical differences about the Fast Furious franchise. The relevance I find in all this man-drama is whether or not Dwayne will even show up in the next major installment at all. Not because I love The Rock so much, but because I’m not sure of how much I’ll care about the franchise moving forward if he doesn’t because of the drama.
To be clear, I love the Fast Furious franchise for what it is, especially after the 4th movie. Good, over-the-top, popcorn fun is always needed in film – more than people seem to think. Not everything has to be some Oscar contender, whatever the hell that means nowadays. But there’s been a lot of nincompoopery coming out of the Fast Furious camp for a while. If it wasn’t the “fake” feud between Vin and Dwayne, it was Tyrese going bat-sh*t on his own videos. And here we are full circle with more Rock vs Diesel. It all gets a bit tiring for me.
Many people like the idea of the upcoming spin-off movie with Dwayne and Jason Statham. I’m happy for them. But you can count me out. Since The Fate of the Furious left an obvious opening for a sequel, that’s all I was looking forward to. One more installment in this franchise to wrap things up would’ve been enough. Not to sound like an enemy of the corporate machine, but never been a fan of cash-grabs. It’s a business, sure. I understand a great deal about business. I also understand the power of bowing out and allowing art to shine bright like a diamond. Greed is an Art killer. This is where I’d usually get into the subject of rebooting, remaking and my dislike for it but I’ll cover all of that some other time in another “Running My Mouth” segment.
Getting back on track – If you haven’t heard Dwayne Johnson’s remarks on the subject, he said the following:
“Vin and I had a few discussions, including an important face-to-face in my trailer,” Johnson told Rolling Stone. “And what I came to realize is that we have a fundamental difference in philosophies on how we approach moviemaking and collaborating. It took me some time, but I’m grateful for that clarity,” the star added. “Whether we work together again or not.”
Dwayne went on to confirm that he and Vin didn’t even shoot a single scene together in Fate of the Furious. That got me thinking like…”Wait a minute, weren’t you two in that scene together when Dom first betrayed the team and crashed Hobbs’ jeep?” Upon further inspection, however…
He continues to add there’s no ill will between them and how glad he is to have clarity after a good old fashion sit-down. And then, to add just a little more fuel to the fire, Dwayne goes on to say…
“Actually, you can erase that last part about ‘no ill will, we’ll just keep it with the clarity.”
Guess he couldn’t help himself with that last bit, eh? Anyway, Dwayne The Rock has always been known to be a diva, even before his movie star days. But having two alpha males butting heads over something they’re both a part of…separation is usually the only option. Or a wrestling match. But that ain’t happening, unfortunately.
Now the waters are muddied. Going into a Fast 9 without Dwayne and/or a spin-off without Vin puts a bad taste in my mouth knowing about all of this behind-the-scenes drama. Will the Fast Furious franchise continue to make money? Hell yes. Many fans are checked into this franchise and ready to spend their money. So, from a business standpoint, let’s keep on chucking them out until the money stops.
Me, on the other hand, just give me Fast 9, wrap things up with Charlize Theron’s Cipher, bring everyone back for one last barbeque and family speech and you can put me to bed. But who am I kidding? If they put out 10 more installments and they’re good, I’ll be there with tickets in hand like the millions (AND MILLIONS) of the Fast Furious fans!…
(You guys HAD to see that coming…)