The tenth instalment of the “Fast and Furious” franchise has hit a major snag.
In a statement posted to the franchise’s official Twitter account, Justin Lin announced he was stepping down as director of “Fast X” only days after production had started.
“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,” he said.
“Over 10 years and five films, we have been able to shoot the best actors, the best stunts, and the best damn car chases,” Lin continued. “On a personal note, as the child of Asian immigrants, I am proud of helping to build the most diverse franchise in movie history. I will forever be grateful to the amazing cast, crew and studio for their support, and for welcoming me into the FAST family.”
According to Deadline, Lin’s decision is due to creative differences, though the parting appears amicable.
Production has been paused briefly as executives and producers search for a new director, and the film’s May 19, 2023, release date is not expected to be affected.
Lin joined the franchise with its third entry, “The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift”, which introduced the popular character Han, played by Sung Kang. He went on to helm the fourth, fifth, and sixth instalments, then returned to direct “F9”.
The director was also expected to helm an eleventh and final film in the franchise, planned for release February 2024.
On Twitter, fans expressed their disappointment over Lin stepping away after becoming one of the architects of the beloved franchise.
Justin Lin dropping out as director on the FAST franchise reportedly over “creative differences,” days into filming the first of two final sequels, after being instrumental in making it the most diverse blockbuster franchise success in Hollywood… a shock, to say the *very* least https://t.co/RAWQPH9bAr
— jen yamato (@jenyamato) April 26, 2022
There's no good way to spin this whatsoever. The fact that they lost Justin Lin, A director who is synonymous with this series is a horrible. It's a bad look for the producers. I'm willing to bet that this is Vin Diesel's fault given he is a tyrant over this series 🤦 https://t.co/0eWo5fgDQb
— MahvelBoah | 𝐄𝐧𝐝𝐮𝐫𝐞 & 𝐒𝐮𝐫𝐯𝐢𝐯𝐞 | (@ThisIsHow1Win) April 26, 2022
Justin Lin’s work is underrated. Especially his Star Trek movie. Better Luck Tomorrow will always be a landmark / crowbar for some of us.
— Aaron Stewart-Ahn (@somebadideas) April 26, 2022
Justin Lin stepping down from fast X pic.twitter.com/PpiNbqHhXj
— Kingly (@l_kingly) April 26, 2022
Nononononononononononononono… Justin Lin is as much this franchise as anyone in front of the camera. This is not wonderful. https://t.co/tgtrW0ihON
— DrewMcWeeny (@DrewMcWeeny) April 26, 2022