Why Vin Diesel Almost Didn't Accept 'The Fast and the Furious' Role

Why Vin Diesel Almost Didn't Accept 'The Fast and the Furious' Role
April 30, 2021 - 14:35 / Anna Valenzuela Rosas

The face of The Fast and the Furious franchise is opening up about how he almost was not a part of the film serious at all! Vin Diesel almost didn't want to play "Dom Toretto"!

Now that Fast 9 is coming out, star Vin Diesel is opening up about how the entire series might have been different!

Vin Diesel Almost Did Not Play "Dom Toretto"

The Fast and Furious franchise is one of the largest and most successful in pop culture. Fans cannot think of the films without thinking of Vin Diesel or Paul Walker. But that is almost what happened!

Vin Diesel himself opened up to Entertainment Weekly about how he joined the franchise 20 years ago. He explained that at first, he was highly interested in the film but his opinion quickly changed.

The Cast of 'The Fast and the Furious'.

Vin said, "No one would ever think that." Universal studios pitched him something that intrigued him saying "'We got this movie that's about illegal street car racing, and we want you to play this character, who's a tough guy, outlaw, with a heart and a code.'"

"Then they describe that scene you see in the first movie, where the camera goes through my eye and down my arm and into the engine, and that's the only thing they described. And I said, 'Yes, I'm in!' The next day I'm supposed to go the premiere in Australia for Pitch Black, and I read the script and I go… I'm conflicted here, because this script is not what I thought it would be."

Vin almost pulled out because the script did not match what he believed the character should be like. The studio quickly tried to win Vin back over and had him meet with their highly respected screenwriter David Ayer. 

Vin remembers his conflicted emotions vividly. He recalls, "The irony is, I felt like I had gotten what the character wanted to be in the first script, but I felt there were things conflicting with this truth — and that's where David came in. I remember him saying, 'The Dom character is so complex, I've never seen anything like it since Alonzo [Denzel Washington's character in Training Day].'"

The "Fast & Furious" stars

Luckily, it was exactly this exchange of ideas that turned Vin back onto the film, "I appreciated that he was able to see the complexities of the character... And some other characters needed some fine-tuning as well, like the Letty character. I'm just so lucky they were open to it all and that they really wanted me to feel great and confident about it. That's not the normal Hollywood story — but my Hollywood story has never been the normal Hollywood story."

Had Vin not accepted the role someone else entirely could have been in his place! Producer Neil H. Moritz told Bill Simmons on the Bill Simmons Podcast that he had actually hoped to nab Timothy Olyphant for the role of "Dom Toretto"! He explained, "The studio said, 'If you can get Timothy Olyphant to play that role we will greenlight the movie… The luckiest thing that ever happened to us is Tim Olyphant turned us down. He's a great actor. In fact, I'm curious to see what that movie would have been..."

Luckily the stars aligned and Vin is still the face of The Fast and the FuriousFast 9 will finally be premiering on June 25th! Check out the trailer here!