In an alternate universe not unlike the one we are all living in currently, Fast & Furious 9 would have been hitting theaters today. Universal Pictures originally dated the sequel, officially titled F9, for a May 22 release. Instead, fans of the so-called Fast Saga have to exercise a great deal of patience, as the movie isn't going to be arriving until next year. This also serves as a possible huge blow to the studio as this was poised to be one of the biggest hits of 2020, if not the single biggest box office earner of the year.
Universal was pulling out all of the stops for F9, the ninth main entry in the long-running action franchise and the tenth overall, counting last year's spin-off Hobbs & Shaw. The studio put on a massive concert in Florida back in January just to debut the first trailer, with the cast on hand to get the hype train moving in the right direction. The trailer contained copious amounts of insane action, as well as a couple of major reveals. John Cena is playing the evil brother of Vin Diesel's Dom and, most importantly, Sung Kang is making his unlikely return as Han.
Unfortunately, the situation at hand forced the studio to rethink things. Just as theater chains around the U.S. were starting to shut down, with many around the world already closed, Universal opted to delay Fast & Furious 9 until April 2, 2021. This was the date originally set aside for Fast & Furious 10, interestingly enough. The movie followed in the footsteps of No Time to Die, becoming one of the first dominoes to fall on the 2020 release calendar. In the months since, many others have joined, being pushed to much later this year, if not well into next.
F9 sees Vin Diesel's Dom Toretto living the quiet life off the grid with Letty and his son, Brian. But they are prepared, as they know that danger always lurks just over their peaceful horizon. This time a threat emerges when Dom is forced to confront the sins of his past in order to save the ones he loves the most. His crew bands together once again to stop an evil plot concocted by the most skilled assassin and high performance driver they've ever encountered, who also happens to be Dom's estranged brother, Jakob.
To date, the franchise has grossed $5.9 billion at the global box office. Returning cast members include Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Ludacris, Jordana Brewster, Nathalie Emmanuel, Charlize Theron and Helen Mirren. Justin Lin, who helmed four previous entries in the series, returns to the director's chair. Neal H. Moritz, Vin Diesel, Jeff Kirschenbaum, Joe Roth, Lin, Clayton Townsend and Samantha Vincent serve as producers. But rest assured, the Fast family will return when F9 hits theaters on April 2, 2021, from Universal Pictures.