Entertainment

24 Crazy ‘Fast & Furious Facts’ Fans Didn’t Know About

Just think about this: when the first Fast & Furious was released, George W. Bush was into the first year of his presidency, the world had just survived the Y2K scare (when everyone expected computer systems to go loco at the turn of the millennium) and the new post 9-11 world order hadn’t been established. Everyone talks about Marvel and Star Wars, but in fact, the Fast & Furious franchise has been as perdurable and has opened ground in the massive Chinese market, where the films sometimes make more money than in the United States. Who would have said that illegal car racing and espionage would be so profitable?

The franchise propelled Vin Diesel and The Rock into worldwide superstardom and has created legends, such as that of the late and much beloved Paul Walker. The franchise has been a consummate star-maker machine. 

The Fast and the Furious (2001)
A brief recap: Domic Toretto (Vin Diesel) organizes illegal street races and the Los Angeles police think he is behind a series of truck robberies. Cop Brian O’Conner (Paul Walker) goes undercover, joining his carritos de carreras crew!

Here are some facts that every fan of the high octane film series should know about each of the eight (sí, ocho, son un chingo!) feature movies release so far! 

Michelle Rodriguez didn’t have a driver’s license (not even a permit!) before she started shooting!

Credit: The Fast and the Furious / Universal Pictures

But we know she is a total badass, so she, of course, managed to be awesome. 

Talking about our Lady Rodriguez, she was dating Vin Diesel in real life during the shoot (par de guapos)

Credit: The Fast and the Furious / Universal Pictures

The chemistry is evident onscreen, so we can only imagine what went on inside those movie set trailers… 

The plot is VERY similar to the classic Keanu Reeves film Point Break

Credit: Point Break/ Largo Entertainment

The classic Hollywood trope of a cop infiltrating a presumed criminal organization will never die! 

2 Fast 2 Furious (2003)
A brief recap: Brian O’Conner seeks the help of a childhood friend and now street racer to bust a dangerous kingpin.

The film was directed by John Singleton, the first Black man to be nominated for an Oscar as Best Director.

Credit: 2 Fast 2 Furious / Universal Pictures

A total legend of the silver screen. He was nominated for his classic urban tale Boyz N’ The Hood. He died last month. 

Paul Walker performed a lot of the stunts in the film.

Credit: 2 Fast 2 Furious / Universal Pictures

He is missed, and this kind of dedication is what made him a legend in the history of action cinema. 

Vin Diesel turned down $25 million to appear in this film

Credit: 2 Fast 2 Furious / Universal Pictures

He said that the films were being produced like serialized movies in the 80s, thinking of quantity over quality. He would return, of course! 

The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift (2006)
A brief recap: A slight deviation from the main plot… a teenager called Sean Boswell moves to Tokyo to avoid going to prison in the US… and of course he enters the street racing scene

More than 100 cars were destroyed or damaged to make this movie

Credit: The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift/ Universal Pictures

Talk about the excesses of Hollywood blockbuster filmmaking! It is pretty cool, though!

Universal practically begged Vin Diesel to make a cameo

 

Credit: The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift/ Universal Pictures

This happened after an early screening of the film did terribly with test audiences. 

The film happens in 2013, which back in 2006 was 7 years into the future!

Credit: The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift / Universal Pictures

This is such a vexing script choice… it does look a little futuristic though. We wonder if they even imagined that the franchise would still be going by then. 

Fast & Furious (2009)
A brief recap: The return of Vin Diesel! Brian and Dominic team up to fight a heroin smuggler

Wonder Woman‘s Gal Gadot made her screen debut here!

Credit: Fast & Furious / Universal Pictures

She was as fierce and amazing then as she is now…  a true female symbol! 

Rapidito, a componer!

Credit: Fast & Furious / Universal Pictures

Universal made the sudden decision to release the film in April instead of June, so composer Brian Tyler was only given three days to work on the score. What a genius… the music is upbeat and truly communicates the adrenaline-infused theme. 

Now Brian is no longer blond… OK… 

Credit: Fast & Furious / Universal Pictures

Paul Walker basically OWNED the franchise (not financially, but artistically). His character changed hair color all of a sudden with no explanation. 

Fast Five (2011)
A brief recap: This is the epitome of a heist movie. Dominic Toretto is in the grips of a Brazilian drug lord, so he and his crew need to buy their freedom.

Director Justin Lin sort of hates digital FX, so most of the car stunts are as real as it gets

Credit: Fast Five / Universal Pictures

This is what has made this franchise survive: a true commitment to the craft of traditional filmmaking despite the massive advances that digital technology has made since 2001. 

This was the first movie in the franchise to be shown in IMAX. 

Credit: Fast Five / Universal Pictures

Grandecito se ve más bonito, no doubt about it. 

Joaquim de Almeida (Reyes, the kingpin) is often cast as a big mafia boss

Credit: Fast Five / Universal Pictures

Point in case, is role as Governor Vargas in Queen of the South, the gringo remake of our own La reina del Sur

Fast & Furious 6 (2013)
A brief recap: The Rock is here! Dominic and Brian get together again to tackle on a team of mercenaries

Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson) is teased with Avengers references

Credit: Fast & Furious 6 / Universal Pictures

They call him Captain America, “Samoan Thor” and The Hulk. Well, those are pretty cool comparisons we think. 

Justin Lin es un necio and it paid off! No CGI!

Credit: Fast & Furious 6 / Universal Pictures

The tank scene is so complicated in terms of logistics that the studio insisted on digital imagery. The director refused and we are thankful for that. Look at this behind-the-scenes shot that reveals how complex it all was! 

Paul Walker passed away the year the film was released

Credit: Furious 7 / Universal Pictures
Credit: Fast & Furious 6 / Universal Pictures

He died on November 30, 2013. The studio donated part of the DVD sales to Walker’s foundation Reach Out WorldWide. 

Furious 7 (2015)
A brief recap: Jason Statham is here! Another action movie powerhouse graces the franchise as a man who seeks revenge against Dominic and his muchachos.

This is the last film featuring Paul Walker

Tribune UK

Stunt doubles, body doubles, and CGI was needed to complete Walker’s appearance in the film. Such a sad moment for the franchise, truly bittersweet as a homage to the actor. They also rescued some unused footage from the previous films. 

Paul’s brothers Caleb and Cody helped out

Credit: 878431-paulmain-1430381325. Digital image. Tribune UK

They are two of the doubles, and they also lent their voices for some voice-over dialogue for the character of Brian. 

Denzel Washington turned down a minor role in the film, so the producers had to settle with… 

Credit: Furious 7 / Universal Pictures

Mr Kurt Russell… TBH, we love him in this role as the enigmatic Mr Nobody. 

The Fate of the Furious (2017)
A brief recap: Dom is seduced by a super intelligent and gorgeous woman… with unexpected consequences

The shooting of the film revealed that there is not a lot of love between Vin Diesel and Dwayne Johnson

Credit: The Fate of the Furious / Universal Pictures

Some scenes featuring Johnson were deleted and this seemed to be Vin Diesel’s doing. As always, Johnson was a gentleman, but the rift was evident. 

Iceland passes as Russia

Credit: The Fate of the Furious / Universal Pictures

The plot includes several scenes in Russia, but in fact, they were shot in Iceland. These scenes include the biggest, meanest explosion ever shot in the Nordic country. 

The dance that Hobbs performs with his soccer team is a Haka, a traditional warrior dance from the Pacific Islands

Credit: The Fate of the Furious / Universal Pictures

Dwayne Johnson is a proud, fierce islander!

The New Cinderella Remake Tapped Camila Cabello To Play The Princess And Billy Porter To Be The Fabulous Godmother

Entertainment

The New Cinderella Remake Tapped Camila Cabello To Play The Princess And Billy Porter To Be The Fabulous Godmother

This year, two 90s classics were remastered and re-launched. The CGI version of The Lion King and the live-action of Aladdin sent movie theaters into a frenzy. And with the success they had in the box office, Disney has announced a few more classics to be retold in the coming years. With live-action remakes taking over the world, interest in all things Disney is skyrocketing. So Sony Studios is giving us a new Cinderella live-action with a modern touch that sounds fairly different from the last remake from 2015, which was firmly traditional and palatable.

Here’s what we know about the latest re-imagining of the classic fairytale set to premiere on February 5, 2021.

Sony’s 2021 Cinderella already has an all-star cast

credit Instagram @camila_cabello

Few details are known about the plot yet, but according to The Hollywood Reporter, “Sony is putting the project on the fast track for production,” so more details will likely be released soon. Unlike 2015’s Cinderella starring Lily James, this will not be a Disney production. The Hollywood Reporter noted that the remake will be produced James Corden, and that the Grammy-nominated Camilla Cabello has been cast to play the part of the rags-to-riches princess, Cinderella. The singer is also said to be heavily involved in the music for the film, she might even inject some of her son cubano into the kids’ classic, but either way, we’re in for a treat. 

“Playing Cinderella is, honestly, a dream for me,” Cabello told “Entertainment Tonight” in August. “It’s a little bit terrifying, but I’m so excited because anybody that knows me knows I’m obsessed with musicals.” “I’m really happy that we’re at a point now in a culture where ‘Aladdin’ or ‘The Little Mermaid’ … little girls can see themselves being represented,” the pop singer added. “I think that is so important, and it’s about time.” The 22-year-old (how is she only 22!) is also working on a new album, so she has a big year ahead. 

The voice behind Frozen princess Elsa, will play the evil step-mother.

Credit Instagram @Idinamenzel

Deadline reported earlier this month that Idina Menzel, is set to assume the role of Evelyn, Cinderella’s evil stepmother. Menzel voiced Elsa, the princess behind Frozen’s iconic viral song, ‘Let It Go‘. She is also a Tony and Grammy Award-winning actress who is a Broadway mainstay from shows like Rent and Wicked

Bibidi-Bobbidi-boo, we’re getting a fabulous fairy godmother!

Credit Instagram @theebillyporter

Sony’s upcoming rendition of the classic tale just got a lot more fabulous with the announcement of the new fairy godmother. Billy Porter confirmed his involvement with the film during a panel at the 20th New Yorker Festival. And if you’re anything like us, you have to agree that his theatricality both on and off-screen more than qualify him for the role. The actor shared his excitement via the New Yorker’s Instagram stories where he first broke the news. “I have a couple movies that I’m working on,” Billy said. “I’m gonna be playing the fairy godmother in the new Cinderella movie with Camila Cabello.” In September, Porter became the first openly gay black man to win the Emmy for best actor in a drama for his work on Pose. Prior to that, he earned a Tony and a Grammy for his role in Broadway’s Kinky Boots. 

The new imagining of the poor girl turned princess grew from an original idea by Carpool Karaoke’s James Corden.

Credit Instagram @thelateshow

The film is set to be a modern musical rendition of the classic, all-too-traditional fairytale. The idea for the new take on Cinderella grew from an original idea from James Corden, the late-night talk show host who has made major musical inroads thanks to his popular “Carpool Karaoke” segments. Corden is producing the project with Leo Pearlman, his partner at Fulwell 73, the production banner that has found success with documentaries such as The Class of ’92, the BAFTA-nominated Bros: After the Screaming Stops and Karaoke. The new rendition will be written and directed by Kay Cannon, who is known for her writing and producing work on the movie series Pitch Perfect and 30 Rock. Cannon got her start working on NBC’s 30 Rock, for which she earned three Emmy nominations. 

She made her directorial debut with Blockers, a female-centric losing-your-virginity comedy whose cast included Kathryn Newton and John Cena. 

All other plot details are being kept in a shoebox, but the story is described as a modern reimagining of the traditional tale of the orphaned girl with an evil stepmother, with a musical bent thrown in for good measure. Camila’s part in the movie would be her debut into film and we’re certain that it won’t be her last adventure in the silver screen. The new Cinderella film is just one of many Disney movies getting rebooted, and we can’t wait to see what this non-Disneyfied version has in store.

 

Check Out These Beautiful Ofrendas Dedicated To Beloved Latino Icons

Entertainment

Check Out These Beautiful Ofrendas Dedicated To Beloved Latino Icons

As the weather cools down and Halloween pops up on our calendars, there’s another holiday quickly approaching that deserves it’s own attention. Every October and November, people from Northern Mexico and around the world celebrate Día de los Muertos by building ofrendas to honor those who they have lost. Ofrendas are shrines set up with the photos of deceased loved ones along with personal items that they appreciated in life. Originating from the Aztecs, these shrines are meant to commemorate their dead loved ones and guide them home on the one day when their souls can journey from the spirit world to the world of the living. 

While ofrendas often honor deceased family members and friends, it’s not unusual to see alters also set up for famous people who have passed away. Fans build these shrines to celebrities in order to pay tribute to their legacy. These celebrity alters are usually as elaborate and amazing as the famous people they are meant to honor. 

Here are some of the remarkable celebrity ofrendas that prove that fame and the love of their fans are everlasting. 

1. Anything for Selenas.

Instagram / @sumnerboi

Selena is one of the most recognizable celebrities of the Latinidad so it makes sense that she’d have quite a few ofrendas built to remember her. San Antonio’s Mi Tierra Cafe & Bakery is a Mexican restaurant that keeps this shrine of Selena up all year long to celebrate the Queen of Tejano. 

2. Dedicated to the icons of Mexico.

Instagram / @eltinterodemama

This colorful ofrenda is a reminder that these shrines can be for more than one person at a time. On this alter, Mexican pop culture is represented by superstar actress Maria Felix, comedian and TV star Chespirito (Roberto Gomez Bolanos) and artist Frida Kahlo. Offerings of fruit, food and alcohol adorn this ofrenda to tempt and delight the spirits of these deceased stars. 

3. A shrine fit for a food god.

Instagram / @hunger_street

Two years ago, the food world lost a huge star with the untimely death of Anthony Bourdain. The celebrity chef was known for traveling the world and learning about local customs and cuisine in such a respectful way that it endeared him to the communities that he visited. This earned him the spot of honor on this ofrenda. 

4. Frida’s ofrenda.

Instagram / @raul_krnx

Frida Kahlo is an artist who has only become more beloved in death. Her image is used in everything from jewelry and makeup to home goods and tee shirts. This shrine pays tribute to the legendary artista with pots of food, Mexican marigolds and skeletal attendants. 

5. An alter for Poet Paz.

Instagram / @lamovidapanama

Octavio Paz was a Nobel Prize-winning poet and one of the most influential voices in Mexican literature. His words have been a source of comfort and inspiration to millions of readers over the years. He was also a diplomat and fought against fascism in Mexico and abroad. All these accomplishments deserve to be remembered and Paz is honored in this papel picado-filled ofrenda. 

6. An offering to two legends.

Instagram / @melodysev

This past decade, we’ve lost some remarkable souls but none more beloved than music artists Prince and David Bowie. The Prince of Funk and Ziggy Stardust have millions of fans across the world and they are still remembered for being innovators and entertainers. This ofrenda in honor of the two was fittingly built at the Santa Barbara Bowl an amphitheater dedicated to great music.  

7. RIP Tony Stark.

Twitter / @mkhenderson428

Sometimes fictional characters touch us so much that they become real to us. So, when a character like this passes away, it’s only natural to honor them the way we would a real person. This Day of the Dead project was dedicated to Tony Stark aka Iron Man. Gone but never forgotten. 

8. Dedicated to las mujeres.

Instagram / @ilaments

This ofrenda was built in tribute to powerful Latinas. Women like Celia Cruz, Jessica Torres, Margarita Neri, and Delores del Río are immortalized among other great women who will always have a special place in history and in the hearts of their fans.

9. An icon from the Golden Age of Mexican cinema.

Instagram / @chableresort

Besides ofrendas, grave sites are also decorated as alters for Día de los Muertos. One of the biggest actors of Mexico’s Golden Age of cinema, Pedro Infante is buried in the Yucatan. For the Day of the Dead, his grave site was adorned with Mexican marigolds and candles to guide his spirit back to the world of the living. 

10. The King has entered the building.

Instagram / @beijingemily

One of the most legendary celebrities to have ever lived is Elvis Presley and the man has become a bigger icon in death. There are still claims of Elvis sightings all over the world. Maybe, those fans are just seeing Elvis’ spirit as he returns to visit the thousands of shrines that are dedicated to him for Día de Los Muertos and year-round.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O4TnFSXDWaM