Vin Diesel Dedicates Fast & Furious Ride to Paul Walker

"This one’s for you Pablo"

Even as the Fast & Furious franchise surges on—with a theme park ride at Universal Studios Hollywood and an eighth installment set for 2017—star Vin Diesel continues to pump the breaks to honor his friend Paul Walker, who died in a car crash in late 2013.

At its opening in Los Angeles on Wednesday, Diesel dedicated the new Fast & Furious — Supercharged 3D car ride to his co-star. “This one’s for you Pablo,” the actor said, invoking the nickname he has often used for Walker.

Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson and Jason Statham, who all starred in the Furious 7, joined Diesel in welcoming fans.

TIME Music

Watch Wiz Khalifa’s Touching Tribute to Paul Walker at the Billboard Music Awards

The rapper teamed up with singer Charlie Puth and violinist Lindsey Stirling to honor the Furious 7 actor's memory

It’s been a year and a half since Paul Walker died in a car accident in California—and for friends, family and his co-stars from the Fast and Furious franchise, the pain is still fresh.

At Sunday night’s Billboard Music Awards in Las Vegas, Wiz Khalifa joined singer and pianist Charlie Puth and violinist Lindsey Stirling for a moving rendition of “See You Again,” a song off the Furious 7 soundtrack, in honor of the late actor. The song, for which a tribute video to Walker debuted in April, was penned by Puth, and the trio’s performance made for the most emotional moment during a night otherwise primarily concerned with theatrics and ceremony.

TIME Music

Watch Wiz Khalifa’s ‘See You Again’ Video Honoring Paul Walker

Paul Walker in FURIOUS 7.
Universal Pictures Paul Walker in FURIOUS 7.

The song is better known as Furious 7’s theme song

Wiz Khalifa has officially released the music video for “See You Again,” featuring Charlie Puth—or as the song is better known, Furious 7’s theme song.

Written for Furious 7—and specifically Paul Walker’s goodbye—the song’s lyrics recall the journey that Walker took throughout the seven Fast and Furiousfilms. In the final moments of the film, Vin Diesel’s voiceover says goodbye to his brother as the song plays in the background.

And in the song’s music video, viewers get their own goodbye montage of sorts while also getting a glimpse at the final moments of Furious 7.

Furious 7 is in theaters now.

This article originally appeared on EW.com.

TIME remembrance

Paul Walker’s Brother: ‘Paul Would be Proud’ of Furious 7

"I've just tripled my family in the last year."

Cody Walker believes his big brother would have given Furious 7 his stamp of approval.

The 26-year-old younger brother of actor Paul Walker, who died in a car crash in November 2013 at 40, opened up about feeling anxious before seeing Furious 7 for the first time at the Hollywood premiere Wednesday.

“I wasn’t nervous to see it. I was more anxious to see how it turned out,” he tells PEOPLE of the latest installment in the Fast & Furious franchise, which starred his older brother up until his death.

“It’s bittersweet, but I think Paul would be proud,” he says.

The premiere evening turned into an emotional tribute to Paul as family and cast members toasted the late actor’s legacy with heartfelt speeches, anecdotes and photos during the evening.

Vin Diesel, 47, who starred alongside Paul throughout the Furious saga, preceded the screening with a tearful speech, telling the audience: “This movie is more than a movie.”

He went on to say, “You’ll feel it when you see it. There’s something emotional that happens to you, where you walk out of this movie and you appreciate everyone you love because you just never know when the last day is you’re gonna see them.”

In the wake of Paul’s death, Cody – who was also joined by his brother Caleb, 37, at the screening – felt a strong connection to the cast while they pushed forward with the 7th movie. The look-alike brothers even filled in as body doubles for Walker’s unfinished scenes.

“I’ve known them for the last 15 years, but not at this level,” says Cody of the film’s longtime cast and crew.

“I’ve just tripled my family in the last year. It does feel like family,” he says.

Not only can he say with confidence that his brother would have been proud of the final product, Cody, too, walked away feeling satisfied.

“I’m so happy with it. It was just so tastefully done,” he says, “and a great ending after everything.”

— Reporting by Melody Chiu

This article originally appeared on People.com.

Read next: Watch Wiz Khalifa’s ‘See You Again’ Video Honoring Paul Walker

Listen to the most important stories of the day.

TIME remembrance

Vin Diesel Pays Tribute to Paul Walker at Furious 7 Premiere

Vin Diesel speaks about Paul Walker at his hand and footprint ceremony in Hollywood, California on April 1, 2015. Vin Diesel speaks about Paul Walker at his hand and footprint ceremony in Hollywood, California on April 1, 2015.

“Last year, it was really hard to come back to work”

While last night’s Furious 7 premiere was a chance to celebrate all of the work that went into the film, Vin Diesel took a moment to honor the memory of his late co-star Paul Walker.

“Last year, it was really hard to come back to work,” Diesel said to the crowd. But the willingness of all his co-stars and director James Wan to return, as well as the support of Universal, inspired him to return to the project.

“The studio was saying, ‘We feel your soul, and we’ll do whatever we have to do to honor your brother [Paul],” Diesel said.

Walker died in a car crash late in 2013 during a pause in production, which left the then-incomplete film’s future uncertain. Diesel and the rest of the cast and crew eventually came back together. They worked to preserve Walker’s memory in the film, bringing on his brothers and a third actor to help complete Walker’s role as Brian O’Conner.

And so finishing Furious 7 became a chance for Diesel and his Fast family to honor Walker. “The movie is more than a movie,” Diesel said. “There’s something emotional that happens to you, where you walk out of this movie and you appreciate everyone you love because you just never know when the last day is you’re going to see them.”

You can watch Diesel’s full speech, from video taken for USA Today.

This article originally appeared on EW.com.


These Are the 11 Best Bromances of All Time

Paul Walker and Vin Diesel's bromance in The Fast and the Furious movies is a thing of beauty. Check out some other cinematic bromances that will hit you right in the feels

TIME movies

Review: In Furious 7, Gravity Is for Wimps

Film Title: Furious 7
Scott Garfield—Universal Tyrese Gibson, Michelle Rodriguez, Paul Walker and Chris "Ludacris" Bridges star in Furious 7

In another sensational episode of the motor-movie series, Vin Diesel and his gang bring improbable buoyancy to the serious work of elegizing a lost friend

The rainbow coalition of hard drivers, grease monkeys and ultimate fighting women that make up the Fast and the Furious universe are charged with capturing a device from multinational miscreants bent on conquering the world. First, though, Dominic Toretto (Vin Diesel) has to arrange a rendezvous with his current nemesis Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham). They meet under an L.A. highway — Dom’s beloved ’69 Dodge R/T Charger growling at Deckard’s Aston Martin DB9 — and steer their vehicles into a high-speed head-on collision. Boom! It looks like mutually assured destruction, but nobody’s seriously hurt. It’s really just a workout for a couple of testosteronic gearheads, doing what manly men do best — crashing the cars they love.

The Fast and Furious movies — those odes to torn asphalt, crunching car-nage, auto-eroticism and, as the characters kept insisting, family values — have often shown a cavalier attitude toward death. Moviegoers in the theater must pretend that they are cocooned by film fantasy: that this universe is one that courts fatal impact without ever making good on the threat that may await audience members from some highway maniac on the drive home.

That blithe belief endured a toxic hit on Nov. 30, 2013. Paul Walker, who had played undercover cop Brian O’Conner since the original 2001 The Fast and the Furious, died when the Porsche Carrera GT driven by Walker’s friend Roger Rodas, a financial planner and amateur racer, crashed into a Valencia, Calif., light pole at a reported 80 to 90 m.p.h., igniting the car and killing both men. The star’s sudden death at 40 put a halt to the Furious 7 shoot and left series screenwriter Chris Morgan with two dreadful dilemmas: how to work Walker’s footage into a revamped movie and how to keep romanticizing the series’ theme — speed thrills — when it was also painfully evident that speed kills.

Furious 7, opening nine months after the initial July 2014 release date, proves how splendidly, if preposterously, movie fiction can trump human tragedy. Without stinting on the greatest hits of the earlier films, it underlines the first law of cinema: that movies — and the people, stories and machines in them — have to move, collide, combust. Secure in this knowledge, 7 meets the demanding standards of the two previous entries, the crazy-great Fast Five (2011) and its amped-up, purified sequel Furious 6 (2013), while providing a tender onscreen farewell for the fallen Walker. It’s an enormous, steroidal blast, and as much ingenious fun as a blockbuster can be.

James Wan, the Saw and Conjuring magician who succeeded Justin Lin, director of the previous four entries, says he chose the Furious 7 title as a reference to Akira Kurosawa’s 1954 martial epic The Seven Samurai. Here, as there, rugged souls do humanity’s dirty work for the satisfaction and the fun. But in the Furious cosmos, these seven include two women. Brian has gone domestic with the foxy Mia (Jordana Brewster), and Dom is reunited with his lost love Letty (Michelle Rodriguez), still stricken with a telenovela case of amnesia. Tej (Chris “Ludacris” Bridges), the computer whiz, and Roman Pearce (Tyrese Gibson), the resident motormouth, are joined by federal agent Luke Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson), who enlisted back in Fast Five and infused the skein with his cartoon gravitas.

As if to challenge the audience’s stomach for stark violence in a PG-13 film, Furious 7 begins with the fiery, almost Walker-like death of one of the series’ regulars (Sung Kang’s Han) and the totaling of Brian’s and Mia’s home. The villainous Deckard is supposed to be avenging the incapacitation of his brother Owen (Luke Evans), the prime bad guy from Furious 6, yet as he leaves Owen’s hospital he blows up his bro and the building that houses him. But this is just a crash test for sensitive viewers. The series long ago expanded from a drag-strip Götterdämmerung to a globe-circling showcase for spectacular stunts in exotic locales.

The plot: a CIA shadow who calls himself Mr. Nobody (Kurt Russell) wants the gang to corral some computer MacGuffin guarded by an IT genius named Ramsey (Nathalie Emmanuel, Game of Thrones’ Missandei) who’s been kidnapped by Deckard and pan-African warlord Jakande (Djimon Hounsou). Honestly, though, who cares? Ramsey is just the excuse for the group to infiltrate an Azerbaijan forest redoubt and recover the van that holds her. This sensational second-act chase, ramping up to Walker’s Brian in a literal cliffhanger, would be the climax of any other action picture, but it’s just a why-not escapade to keep you from going for popcorn during the movie’s two-hour-plus nonstop assault.

On we fly, to Abu Dhabi, where Dom and Brian hijack a sheik’s W Motors LykN Hypersport, vroom it out of the 50th floor of an Etihad Tower skyscraper and into the adjacent high-rise — and then again into a third building, before our heroes land somehow intact. “Cars can’t fly!” Brian keeps saying, but Furious 7 refutes all aeronautic logic with its next stunt, which one-ups the skydiving Elvises from the old movie (and the Broadway musical) Honeymoon in Vegas by dropping five members of the team and their cars 10,000 feet from a C-130 military transport. (Auto coordinator Dennis McCarthy, who deployed about 250 vehicles for the movie, insists that this was no illusion: the cars truly did float to earth, most of them safely.) By the end of the movie, back in L.A., you’re not surprised when a car can serve as surface-to-bad-guy-in-helicopter missile. In such a buoyant enterprise as this, gravity is for wimps.

Retaining one sweetly anachronistic element of the series, the cast goes not just fender-to-fender but fist on fist, bulk on bulk, hulk on hulk. Tough-guy franchise mavens Statham and Johnson mix it up in a fracas that leaves Hooks incapacitated for half of the movie — until he rises from his sick bed, cracks open his arm cast and mutters, “Time to go to work.” Rodriguez tangles with MMA Medusa Ronda Rousey, and Walker (or his stunt-double team) staves off a wondrously savage attack from Tony Jaa, the Muy Thai Warrior. As much as Furious 7 flirts with scenarios from The Avengers, in its heart, it still wants to be Fight Club.

No series with the worldwide box-office horsepower of this one — $2.4 billion so far, with a bonanza awaiting the release of Furious 7 — wants to imagine its own demise. So in its closing credits, each of the recent episodes has introduced a new villain for the next installment. Diesel, a Furious producer and guiding light, has said he sees 7 as the first in a third trilogy. (In strict chronology, the series is a kind of terrestrial Star Wars, in that the fourth through sixth films were one long flashback beginning at the end of the 2006 Fast and Furious: Tokyo Drift; Han’s death at Deckard’s hands brings the story back to the present.) Russell’s presence as Mr. Nobody may point toward future chapters, but 7 has no end-of-film tease. It must send its dead co-star on a verklempt trip to Valhalla.

In the series’ multiracial retinue of toughs, Walker’s Brian was the one WASP solid citizen. If the dark, glowering Diesel was the franchise’s engine, the blond Walker provided the ethical brakes — yin to Vin’s yang. Though the early films emphasized the near romantic charisma of this complementary couple, in Fast Five and Furious 6, Walker was really a supporting character, ornamental but not essential to the series’ grand grit. Yet Brian’s mulishness and recklessness sometimes hinted at a desperation in completing his mission. In the first film, when Dom doesn’t yet know that Brian is an undercover cop, Walker tells an FBI agent, “I just need some more time.” The agent snaps, “If you want Time, buy the magazine.”

Finally Walker ran out of it. But not Brian. Making judicious use of outtakes, CGI work and model-doubling from his younger brothers Caleb and Cody, the 7 filmmakers fully integrated the actor into the film. Their improvisatory skill and their feeling for their friend give his final moment a sleek, poignant, unforced grace. In a series that consistently elevates B-movie car crashes and smashes to state-of-the-art epiphanies, it’s only appropriate that a departed star should be able to cruise off to placid immortality.


TIME movies

Watch Vin Diesel’s Emotional Tribute to Paul Walker

Walker died in a 2013 car crash

Vin Diesel said this week that “I lost my friend” when Paul Walker died in a 2013 car crash.

“When the tragedy happened, I lost my friend,” the actor said of his late Furious 7 co-star during an advance screening in Los Angeles. “I lost my brother.”

“This was a very, very personal and important film for us,” Diesel said. “It was in some ways the hardest movie I ever had to do.”

Walker, 40, was killed in a car crash in November 2013 during a break in filming. His two brothers and stand-ins replaced Walker to complete the movie.

TIME Television

Comedy Central Cuts Paul Walker Jokes From Bieber Roast

Tim P. Whitby—Getty Images Actor Paul Walker attends the World Premiere of 'Fast & Furious 6' on May 7, 2013 in London.

"Sometimes the line is discovered by crossing it"

Comedy Central will cut jokes about late actor Paul Walker from the upcoming Roast of Justin Bieber.

The network’s roasts are known for being vulgar and over-the-top, but Comedy Central decided that the jokes about Walker, who died in a car crash in 2013, went too far, USA Today reports.

“Roasts often push the limits of good taste and we give the participants full reign to try things knowing we have the edit to shape the show,” Comedy Central said in a statement on Monday. “Sometimes the line is discovered by crossing it. The Paul Walker references will not be in the telecast.”

Comedian Jeffrey Ross directed his Walker jokes at fellow roaster Ludacris, Walker’s friend and Fast & Furious 7 costar.

“Move b—h, get out of the way,” Ross said, quoting one of Ludacris’ songs. “That’s what Paul Walker should have told that tree.”

After the audience booed and groaned, Ross replied, “Too soon? Too fast? Too furious? Give me a break people I’m trying to save this kid’s life.”

Afterward, Bieber himself said he was offended by Ross’ comments, saying that he “didn’t particularly like the Walker jokes.”

Roast of Justin Bieber will air March 30.

[USA Today]

Read next: The 21 Best Jokes From the Roast of Justin Bieber

Listen to the most important stories of the day.


Despite Dank Reviews, The Other Woman Rules Box Office

The No. 1 position goes to revenge comedy The Other Woman, starring Cameron Diaz, Leslie Mann and Kate Upton, which raked in $24.7 million on opening weekend and beat Captain America even though it has a low positive rating on Rotten Tomatoes

There’s a new reigning box office champion in town. Revenge comedy The Other Woman knocked down Captain America: The Winter Soldier after the Marvel action flick’s three weeks at the top, as the appeal of co-stars Cameron Diaz, Leslie Mann and Kate Upton managed to rake in $24.7 million in its opening weekend. The Other Woman’s audience was reportedly 75 percent women, faring more than adequately despite receiving a paltry 25 percent positive rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Captain America’s $16 million this week was good enough for second place, while Heaven is for Real placed third at $13 million. Rio 2‘s $13 million and Brick Mansion‘s $9 million round out the top five.

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