Universal officially shuts down Fast and Furious 7 indefinitely
In the only move possible after the tragic death of Paul Walker, Universal has indefinitely shut down production on FAST AND FURIOUS 7. While not supporting the rumors that they are scrapping the film and starting over, the studio is not rushing anything out of respect to Walker's family and the legacy of the franchise.
With production slated to start again in Abu Dhabi a few days ago with Paul Walker, the studio recognized that FAST AND FURIOUS 7 could not easily work around losing one of the main characters in the film. Universal issued the following statement about the decision.
“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. We are committed to keeping Fast & Furious fans informed, and we will provide further information to them when we have it. Until then, we know they join us in mourning the passing of our dear friend Paul Walker.”
Many of you have made comments that the Brian O'Connor character should not be killed off but rather written out of the story. Suggestions include having Walker and Jordana Brewster's characters sent into hiding to keep them safe from upcoming events. There does not seem to be any way of continuing the storylines started in FAST AND FURIOUS 6 without addressing the absence of Walker. But, it also seems in poor taste to kill him off.
There may be no easy decision here and it doesn't sound like ending the franchise is a financial option for the studio. Most fans would understand if Paul Walker's death effectively ends the FAST AND FURIOUS series even at the cost of never seeing the seventh film completed. It does seem obvious that the July 11, 2014 release date is now an impossibility, but once a decision is made on how the studio will proceed, we will let you know.