11 Apr – At the world premiere for "Fast And Furious 8" in New York City's Radio City Music Hall, the late star of the franchise, Paul Walker was given special mention and tribute by his once co-star, Vin Diesel.
As reported by The Hollywood Reporter, the producer and actor introduced the film by listing all of the well-known Hollywood A-listers involved in the film-Dwayne Johnson, Jason Statham, Charlize Theron, Scott Eastwood and Kurt Russell-and how none of them would be there "if it wasn't for the decades of work that my brother Pablo put into this franchise," Diesel said, using his personal nickname for Walker.
"When you see this movie, know that this is from love."
Paul Walker died in 2013 at the age of 40, in a car crash that was not associated with the franchise, while "Fast And Furious 7" was still in production. The film ended with a scene dedicated to his memory, with the help of CGI magic and Walker's two brothers.
And while he had no part in the latest instalment, he was still close to the cast's thoughts during filming. Diesel says that there wasn't a second that went by without them thinking of Walker while making this film.
For the film, Diesel said he had put much thought in "how to bring him into the movie, how to represent him, and how to make something that he would be proud of". He hopes that his friend is proud of the outcome.
This would be the second film in the "Fast and Furious" franchise in which Walker's character, Brian O'Conner doesn't make an appearance-the first being "Fast And Furious: Tokyo Drift". Still Walker's mother, Cheryl and daughter Meadow were present for the screening that night in New York.
Others who attended the premiere include, the director, F. Gary Gray and cast members: Dwayne Johnson, Michelle Rodriguez, Jason Statham, Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Chris "Ludacris" Bridges, Kurt Russell, Scott Eastwood and Charlize Theron.
Before the screening, Ludacris told reporters: "We like to say the last one is for Paul and this one is from Paul. We wanted to make the best movie possible."
"Fast and Furious 8" comes to cinemas this 13 April.