Collider goes to the Set of FAST & FURIOUS – Read a Report Here

     February 12, 2009

Written by Steve ‘Frosty’ Weintraub

As most of you are well aware, on April 3rd Universal is releasing “Fast & Furious”. While it’s the fourth movie in the series, it’s the first time all the actors from the original film have reunited for a sequel at the same time. That’s why the tagline on the poster says “New Model, Original Parts”. Anyway, while they were filming the movie last year, Universal was kind enough to invite a few people to the set and I was one of them. Below you’ll find a brief recap of my time on the set, but if you’re just here for all the new images, scroll further down the page and you’ll find all of them.

After a fun ride to where they were shooting on-location where we probably made our Universal publicist Lindsey crazy with our non-stop talking, we arrived and immediately realized we might have all underdressed. You see, we were told to bring coats and be prepared for cold weather…but since it had been a really warm day in Los Angeles, we all figured it would be warm at the Stevenson Ranch where they’d be filming. Not true. The wind was howling and it was actually quite cold. In fact, if they didn’t have heaters on the set, I don’t know if I would’ve made it through the night.

When we first got there we were offered some craft services (free food). Since the set was a bus ride away from where we were and they were figuring out what they’d be filming, we did what you always do when you visit a movie set: we waited around and talked.

The thing no one tells you about when you study moviemaking is all the time you spend waiting. It’s no one’s fault. It’s just figuring things out like where the camera will go or how they’re going to light a scene takes time. Also, shit happens on a movie set. You can’t plan for all possibilities. Sometimes it’s darker than you thought it was going to be or the weather forces you to shift days. Sometimes the best of intentions means squat. So when you go to visit a movie set, you just hope the downtime doesn’t last too long.

Thankfully, even though there was a lot going on that night, we only waited a little while before Paul Walker came into the tent where we were and did a great interview. He was really open and honest about why he came back to the franchise and you can read the interview here.

Soon after interviewing Paul, director Justin Lin came in and we got to speak to him for awhile. And just like Paul, Justin was really open about everything and he told us some great stories about how he chose the cars that would be in the movie and what it was like directing a big summer action film. If you’d like to read the interview, click here.

A little while after speaking with Justin, picture car coordinatorDennis McCarthy came in and we talked to him about all the cars in the movie and how they went about getting them. And a little while later, we spoke to Laz Alonso about playing…I’m not sure how much I can say about his character…so I’ll just say we spoke to him. Look for the interviews with Laz and Dennis McCarthy next Monday.

As you might imagine, the interviews took a little while and by the end, we were all ready to watch some filming.

So after conducting all of our interviews, we all boarded a small mini van and drove up a long dark road with a steep hill. In the distance we could see a lot of lights, and as we drove further into the night, we got closer to what seemed to be daylight as the lights illuminated everything.

Anyhow, when we walked onto set, there were dozens of people working. There were camera people setting things up, tons of cars being cleaned, and we could see director Justin Lin talking to Vin Diesel and they were discussing how to film the sequence we were about to watch. Since Universal has asked us not to reveal what we saw as it’s a really important scene in the movie, I’ll just say it was very cool to see Vin Diesel work as I’ve been a fan of his for awhile.

As we stood around and watched all the people put the sequence together, we all tried to stay out of everyone’s way as the small set was very crowded. Also, the sequence we saw had a lot of cars being used and they were sometimes shooting wide shots.

Over the course of a few hours standing outside in the cold (thank you portable heaters), we got to see Lin figure out how he wanted the scene to unfold and we saw them shoot it a number of times. In take after take we saw the cars drive up the hill and hit their mark, with Paul and Vin doing all their own driving. And while I’d like to say what happens in this scene, all I can do is offer you this picture. We were standing outside frame on the lower right.

After watching filming for a number of hours, it was time for us to leave to begin the long drive back to Los Angeles. I think it was around 2 or 3 in the morning when we finally left, and after standing in the cold for many hours, I was absolutely ready to be in a warm van.

So even though this set report has come to a close, I’ve got some cool stuff you can still see because Universal has provided the sites that went with over 30 new images from “Fast & Furious” and they’re below and on page 2.

Finally, last year I did a ton of set visits and over the next few months I’ll have reports for some of the biggest films this summer. Some exciting stuff is coming so get ready. In fact, look for my “Watchmen” set visit this Monday night…..

a lot more images are on page 2 ———–>


and to wrap it up…here’s an image of me on set

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