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Last month, Vin Diesel took the stage at CinemaCon to announce that he and the folks at Universal Pictures are currently developing Fast & Furious 8 to be released in April 2017. Unfortunately, he didn't add any details about who else would be returning for another ride... but now one of the biggest stars has chimed in on the subject. Dwayne Johnson has confirmed that he will indeed be back to star in the next Fast & Furious movie.
The Nerd Report caught up with Johnson quickly this past weekend, and took the opportunity to ask him if he would be coming back for Fast & Furious 8. The actor's response didn't exactly go super in-depth, giving the reporter a less than 10 word response, but he most definitely responded in the affirmative:
Of course. Can’t go on without Hobbs.
It's worth pointing out that as of late Dwayne Johnson has been on interesting turf where the next Fast & Furious sequel was concerned. While at CinemaCon at the same time as Vin Diesel, Johnson was actually quoted saying that he had sat down with his Furious 7 co-star and decided that it would be best to "create a little space" so that fans could enjoy part seven before getting ready to ingest part eight. That doesn't really seem to be the plan anymore, as production on Furious 8 is likely being planned to start in the first half of next year, but apparently it's a schedule that Johnson can adjust to.
In the last three Fast & Furious films, Dwayne Johnson has played DSS Federal Agent Luke Hobbes, who has established a nice record of being allied with Vin Diesel's Dom and his crew... after they first squared off as adversaries. When we last saw Luke in Furious 7, he healed a broken arm through the magic of flexing, used a hand-held Gatling gun to take down a helicopter, and made sure that Jason Statham's Deckard Shaw never sees the light of day again. There weren't really any indications as to where we could see the character go next, but his role as the member of a government agency has proven to be useful to screenwriter Chris Morgan ever since Fast Five.
At this stage, we now know that both Vin Diesel and Dwayne Johnson will be coming back for more action in Furious 8 - but who else will be joining the party? Surely Michelle Rodriguez, Ludacris, and Tyrese Gibson will be back, but what about Jordana Brewster - who presumably will just stay with Paul Walker's Brian O'Conner forever in paradise? Could Kurt Russell or Nathalie Emmanuel make their way into the mix? Even beyond returning stars, let's not forget that this is a franchise that has been going bigger and bigger ensemble-wise for years now. Basically, expect a lot more news to come out of this film in the coming months.
Fast & Furious 8 will be in theaters on April 14, 2017.