The script for Fast and Furious 7 is being rewritten according to The Hollywood Reporter. The recent death of the charismatic FF7 hero Paul Walker triggered this move of the production house, Universal Studios. According to the details over the media, most of the scenes of FF7 have already been shot. The optimum thing would be to use those scenes and re-work the story to give Walker’s character a respectful exit.
Walker’s role as Brian O’Connor is a very sensitive and pivotal one in FF7. There has been almost $150 million already invested in FF7, so Universal Pictures is trying to adjust the script a so they can utilize that investment. A source close to The Hollywood Reporter said that, “there’s not really a road map.”
Instead of starting production afresh, Universal is weighing options for using that investment to complete production while giving Walkers character a respectful exit. Fast and Furious and Walker already have a huge fan base, so even if the FF7 script is modified a little bit it should not cause a problem with the franchise.
Although the humane thing for Universal is to stand beside the bereaved family members, the huge investment in the film has made the production authorities a little worried it seems. If the script is rewritten, then the final scenes of the movie have to be used judiciously so that Walker’s exit can be tactical as well as smooth.
As per THR the shooting should start by late January and the screenwriter, Chris Morgan, has already started working on the script. It seems that the death of Walker has created a great deal of pressure on Universal Pictures. Shooting of Fast and Furious 7 was put on hold for some time after the star’s demise. The desperation to make the film work without Walker is quite visible on the production house, according to several sources.
The rewriting of the script towards a workable ending can be done in several ways that should satisfy fans of the franchise and pay appropriate homage to Walker’s memory. The love and respect which Walker commanded from his fans is overwhelming and squeezing out a super hit in FF7 is definitely a challenge for the director James Wan.
Studio chairman Donna Langley and production co-president Jeffrey Kirschenbaum were charged with the huge responsibility of finding a creative solution to Fast and Furious 7. If the rumors in social media are to be believed, the firm Fireman’s Fund has to pay the full amount of $150 million to Universal Pictures if the franchise decides to start afresh.
Neither Universal Pictures nor the Fireman’s Fund has commented on any such scenario. It is very well understood that if the script is rewritten then a lot of calculations will come into play. Be it James Wan, Chris Morgan, or Donna Langley, the pressure in on everybody. After all, it is the Fast and Furious 7 script they are rewriting, and fans of both the movies and Walker have high expectations.
By Sunando Basu