The Valuable Lesson Fast And Furious’ Director Took From The Golden Girls

Dom and Jakob Toretto facing off for the first time in years in F9

When you think of Fast and Furious, the classic sitcom The Golden Girls may or may not come to mind. One is a film series built around fast cars and death-defying stunts while the other centered around four women in their golden years living, loving and eating together. But it seemed the latter informed the former. Fast and Furious director Justin Lin revealed the valuable lesson he took from The Golden Girls.

The Golden Girls may be remembered for its memes and one-liners, but those women were a family until the very end. You can see some of that in the Fast and Furious films. According to F9 director Justin Lin, that’s on purpose. Lin revealed how the classic NBC sitcom inspired the franchise’s team-up factor:

The Golden Girls are part of the Fast lore because when I was a kid I loved Golden Girls. Saturday nights, it was Golden Girls, Empty Nest, and then there was [Nurses]. They had this thing called Hurricane Saturday night, all three episodes got hit by a hurricane. That was the first time where I was like, 'Oh, they all exist in the same universe.' That was the inspiration for Fast Five. We brought back all the characters, they all existed in the same universe. That's the Golden Girls connection.

For Fast Five to be influenced by those specific NBC sitcoms, it proved just how much television influences film. Much like Justin Lin, I vividly remembered watching those episodes as a kid. Knowing the film franchise was influenced by The Golden Girls added an unexpected yet welcomed layer.

The NBC lineup Justin Lin referenced ran from 1991 to 1992. The Golden Girls ran from 1985 to 1992 on the network before being joined by Empty Nest in 1988 and Nurses in 1991. The latter two sitcoms ended in 1995 and 1994, respectively.

To add some more Golden Girls nuggets in the mix, Justin Lin said he would love to add America’s favorite Golden Girl Betty White to the Fast and Furious cast. Surprisingly during his Entertainment Weekly interview, the F9 director let out his fanboy by showing off his Golden Girls-themed mug. Nice to know that there are still those Golden Girls devotees out there. It would be great to see White interact with the "family" or Queenie Shaw aka Helen Mirren.

As a Golden Girls fanboy myself, I can relate to Justin Lin drawing inspiration from the beloved sitcom. The dynamic between Dorothy, Rose, Blanche and Sofia allowed each woman to stand on her own while acting as a chosen family compared to an actual family. That’s the same characteristic that makes the Fast and Furious franchise so beloved (besides the outrageous car stunts). The love and affection between both casts love both on and off-screen. That’s obvious by the Fast and Furious cast’s social media interactions.

The family aspect of the Fast and Furious franchise will be on full display with the return of Han Lue and Sean Boswell in F9. The much-anticipated ninth installment will arrive in theaters on June 25.

Adreon Patterson
News Writer

A boy from Greenwood, South Carolina. CinemaBlend Contributor. An animation enthusiast (anime, US and international films, television). Freelance writer, designer and artist. Lover of music (US and international).