In just a couple of days, the 7th instalment of the high octane “Fast & Furious” franchise aka “Furious 7” will finally be released to the world. For those of us who have been following the film series closely, there’s no denying that watching it will evoke tears as “Furious 7” will mark the late Paul Walker’s final movie – ever.
Now, for what it’s worth, Paul Walker’s “Fast & Furious” co-star and “brother from another mother”, Vin Diesel shared yet another bittersweet story about the last time he saw Paul – a man he lovingly used to call, “brother Pablo”. Unlike many of the other anecdotes about the best friends, which are often funny or touching, this story is so much more haunting.
The poignant story, first written by moviepilot, takes us back to a time in November 2013. Vin Diesel was filming a dangerous stunt for “Furious 7” which called for his character, Dom Toretto, to drive into danger headfirst, in an almost sacrificial manner, in order to save his “Fast & Furious” family.
In the film, the stunt leaves Toretto lifeless, with Brian O’Connor (played by Paul Walker) rushing to revive him. While filming the scene Vin said he suddenly started imagining his own death, saying:
I started to think, “What would happen to Paul Walker if I died?”
The stunt had such a lasting impact in his mind that when Vin Diesel met up with Paul after the shoot he told him, “If I do die, let them know what kind of brother I’ve been to you.”
They embraced, and soon after parted ways. Little did Vin Diesel know, in a cruel twist it wasn’t Vin who was tragically killed just 2 weeks later, but Paul. What makes it all the more tragic is that their meeting following that dangerous stunt scene was the last time Vin would ever see his friend.
Following Paul’s death, filming stopped for 4 weeks in order for the script to be rewritten to write out Paul Walker’s character, Brian O’Conner, in a respectful way, though Vin said he wasn’t even sure if he could come back to continue working on the film. Finally he relented, but only because he was sure that it was what Paul would have wanted.
Though it was hard enough for the remaining cast of the film to come back and complete the project without their friend and co-star, it was also a technically difficult task because Paul hadn’t completed filming on all of his scenes. Fortunately though, his brothers, Caleb and Cody, as well as actor John Brotherton were able to be used as body doubles and, in combination with Weta Studios, CGI was used to make it look as though Paul had acted through the entire movie.
Until today, Paul’s family is still trying to come to terms with his death. Vin Diesel is no exception too, as he would also later go on to name his daughter Pauline, in memory of his buddy Paul Walker.
We miss you too, Paul 🙁
“Furious 7” is set to be released in a cinema near you on 3rd April.