Critics were not impressed when The Fast and the Furious hit the silver screen in 2001. The dialogue was cheesy, the plot predictable and the script so-so, they said. Who wanted to watch nearly two hours of pimped-up cars, hot girls and high-speed car chases?
Millions upon millions of people, that’s who. Sixteen years after its debut, The Fast And The Furious has become one of the most successful franchises in Hollywood history, spawning seven sequels.
In Fast & Furious 8 AKA The Fate Of The Furious AKA F8, the hard-driving gang reunited and the movie took a staggering $1.2 billion at the global box office. It’s out now on DVD, Blu-ray, DStv Box Office and streaming services.
MOST OUTRAGEOUS STUNTS
Here are five times death was spectacularly defied:
The Fast And The Furious (2001) – For the climactic race scene between Brian and Dom the pair face each other over a railway crossing, narrowly missing a speeding train.
2 Fast 2 Furious (2003) – In an attempt to catch the villain Brian accelerates his Chevrolet Camaro to almost 200 km/h – and zooms right onto the back of a yacht.
The Fast And The Furious: Tokyo Drift (2006) – Takashi drifting around corners in his Nissan 350Z. Say no more.
Fast & Furious (2009) – Dom and Letty attempt to hijack an oil tanker and face almost certain death when the fiery vehicle comes barrelling towards them. But no: Dom calmly glides his Buick Grand National under the oil tank, then watches it roll off a cliff. Epic.
Fast Five (2011) – Dom drags a stolen bank vault behind his Dodge Charger then turns it into a weapon, using it to smash the police cars pursuing him. He dives out of the car at the last second before it too crashes into another vehicle.
Fast & Furious 6 (2013) – Dom (again!) drives an Alfa Romeo Giulietta through the nose cone of a crashing, burning plane. An honourable mention should also go to a scene in which an army tank cannons down a highway, crushing everything in its path.
Furious 7 (2015) – Dom (yet again!) mutters “It’s time to unleash the beast” before accelerating his Lykan HyperSport, knocking over Deckard Shaw and driving the car through two skyscrapers. What a guy.
$50 million (R700 million) – What it cost to keep Brian in Furious 7 after Paul Walker died in a car accident before filming had wrapped. Reshooting key scenes using Paul’s two brothers and CGI technology cost big bucks.
139 million – Number of people who viewed the trailer for the Fate Of The Furious within 24 hours of its YouTube release.
230 – Number of cars destroyed in the making of Furious 7.
$1,5 billion (R21 billion) – Amount Furious 7 grossed at the box office, making it the sixth highest-earning moving of all time.
$3,9 billion (R54,6 billion) – Amount all seven films in the franchise have collectively grossed.
28 – Number of times characters have jumped onto or off moving vehicles during the franchise.
(Sources: ETONLINE.COM, INDIANEXPRESS.COM, ?GAMESRADAR.COM, LEOSIGH.COM, HOLLYWOODREPORTER.COM, MTV.COM, DIGITALSPY.COM, THE-NUMBERS.COM, WIRED.COM, BELFASTELEGRAPH.CO.UK, CINEMABLEND.COM)