Fans of the Fast and the Furious franchise may be disappointed to learn that Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, who has played the recurring character Luke Hobbs since the fifth film, Fast Five, won’t be appearing in the ninth installment of the series due to filming conflicts. Co-stars Vin Diesel and Tyrese Gibson, however, may have differing opinions due to an ongoing feud with Johnson.
What is Dwayne Johnson up to?
Rather than being a part of the ninth installment of the series, both Johnson and co-star Jason Statham have recently wrapped shooting on a Fast and the Furious spinoff film Hobbs & Shaw, the first spinoff film of it’s kind for the series.
In an interview with Joshua Horowitz at MTV News, Johnson stated that “as of now, we’re not in Fast 9 because they’re getting ready to start shooting,” referring to himself and Jason Statham. “The plan has always been for the Fast and Furious universe to grow and expand,” Johnson explained. In other words, we may see some new characters in the ninth film in addition to this spinoff.
The on-set feud between Johnson and Vin Diesel
Though the beef between Johnson and Diesel started with a subtle hint on Johnson’s Instagram post, it quickly became apparent that there was more to it as multiple sources stated that both superstars were difficult to work with on-set. Then, in another Instagram post, Johnson gave thanks to all of the people who helped make an impact in the filming of the eighth installment, The Fate of the Furious, leaving Diesel completely unmentioned. All of this led to a mostly unspoken feud, which TMZ reported was trying to be quashed through secret meetings between the two actors.
Tyrese Gibson defends Diesel
Tyrese Gibson picked a side in an Instagram post where he blatantly defends Diesel, stating that “if no one else will jump out there and stand up I will,” in reference to his co-star and friend, as shown with the picture of the two of them on the red carpet. He went on to state “you’re my brother for life let’s keep it positive and keep rockin this thing.” While he doesn’t specifically call out Johnson, it’s clear whose side Gibson is on.
Where do they stand now?
Though it appears Johnson and Diesel have come to an understanding in regards to their differences, Gibson was very clear that he was upset about the addition of the spinoff to the film’s franchise. On Instagram, Gibson stated “If you move forward with that #Hobbs movie, you will have purposely ignored the heart to heart moment we had in my sprinter”, and that, as a Fast and the Furious family, “we don’t fly solo.” This leads most to believe that the beef isn’t over yet, and that Diesel and Gibson are most likely happy to not have to deal with Johnson during the filming of the ninth installment.
The future of the Fast and Furious franchise
To Diesel and Gibson’s delight, Johnson didn’t have the bandwidth to be in the ninth The Fast and the Furious film, but don’t count him out of future franchise installments. In his same interview with MTV News, Johnson states that “with Fast 10 down the road, you never know. Because, look, at the end of the day, the truth is there’s unfinished business between Hobbs and Dom. It’s unfinished.” Hopefully his return doesn’t reignite the previous fires that are just now being put out regarding their friendships, but it will be nice to see the cast back together in the future installments.
Hobbs & Shaw is set to be released on July 26th, 2019, with the ninth installment of The Fast and The Furious franchise being released one year later on April 10, 2020.