According to claims made by one star, Vin Diesel is the reason why an action cinema legend wasn’t cast in the long-running Fast & Furious franchise.
Fast & Furious star Vin Diesel reportedly vetoed the casting of one major action movie star. After first getting its start back in 2001, the long-running action franchise just recently released its tenth installment in the main saga, Fast X. Diesel’s Dominic Toretto has been with the movie series since the beginning, and the actor now exerts considerable influence over the franchise as a producer.
Van Damme’s Fast & Furious Casting Would Suit A Franchise Trend
It’s not clear what installment Van Damme was considered for and whether this is a recent occurrence or one that is years old, but the action star does seem like a good fit for the series. While earlier installments remained a little more focused in terms of the characters they followed, the more recent entries have introduced a host of new friends and foes.
For the male cast, in particular, an emphasis is placed on muscular physiques and fight prowess, at least on-screen. Dwayne Johnson, for example, joined the franchise as the no-nonsense Luke Hobbs in Fast Five. Jason Statham, too, another actor known for action-heavy roles, joined in the next installment. The casting of John Cena in F9, and of Jason Momoa and Alan Ritchson in Fast X, also continues this trend.
Although Van Damme is considerably older than most of the above stars, with his action career reaching its peak in the 1990s, he seemingly would’ve been right at home as part of the Fast & Furious cast. It’s not known why Diesel may have vetoed the casting, but Van Damme did have a reputation, for a time, for being somewhat difficult to work with. It also seems like the Fast & Furious casting mostly targets stars that will appeal to a younger demographic, and younger audiences probably don’t have the same relationship to Van Damme that older audiences do.