Vin Diesel’s career is fascinating. The actor was once a struggling New York artist, trying to find his niche in the movie industry. With little success, Diesel decided to write, direct, produce, score and star in a short film about a struggling actor. The result was Multi-Facial, a 20-minute semi-autobiographical wonder that performed at the Cannes Film Festival. Steven Spielberg then saw the film and wrote a role in Saving Private Ryan specifically for Diesel. Not a bad business card.
Diesel has had a long box office career since then, running the Fast and Furious, xXx, and Riddick franchises, while also being a part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe as the voice of Groot, and with an upcoming role in Avatar 2. .
With Fast and Furious 9 now in theaters, GamesRadar + had the chance to briefly catch up with Diesel, ask a few questions about the new release, and get an update on the future of the Riddick franchise. Here is our short Q&A.
Gamesradar +: You’ve been playing Dom for so long and I feel like the biggest recent change in him has been becoming a father. He’s not a quarter-mile guy at a time anymore. What is your opinion on this?
Diesel: I think for decades if you looked up the word “brotherhood” in the dictionary, you would see a picture of Dom and Brian, and, in this ninth chapter, we allow our characters to really evolve in real ways. And that means you move on to fatherhood. So this whole chapter, this whole ninth movie is really about fatherhood. What’s so remarkable is that we take a scene from 20 years ago, where Dom and Brian talk about his Charger and what it means to Dom. And for decades, we assumed the car was nothing but the loss of his father. And in this chapter, we realize that this also represents a broken fellowship, the past, and how we reconcile that is part of what this chapter is about.
John Cena’s introduction to Jacob and those flashbacks before The Fast and the Furious, they reframe the first movie in a very interesting way.
I never imagined that in the ninth chapter we would go so far into the past before the movie that started 20 years ago.
You have come a long way since the theft of DVD players.
Yeah we have, yeah we have.
Dom has been with you for so long, I imagine it must have felt like the character is part of the fabric of who you are? What’s the process for finding new things in Dom to explore?
Ah, my father was a theater teacher and a director. And we often had actors for dinner. And they, more often than not, were talking about the different process of method of action or what you have. He recently said something to me that none of them have ever entertained: “How would it be to play a character on screen for 20 years?” And what would that process be? And I can tell you shoot from real life. And there is a point where you don’t know where your life ends and where the movie begins. And, literally, there are scenes that are taken from my children. So, I love this scene where Dom puts his son to sleep and a son says, ‘Daddy, you know where God is?’ And then point to my heart. This is something my daughter did when I put her to sleep. I would never have thought of this poetry. It was such a special moment. I felt like it was sort of representative of the Fast universe. And so it’s in the movie.
In addition to Fast, you have the Riddick franchise, which has been in both movies and games, with the prequel to the game Escape From Butcher Bay. What’s going on with Riddick 4? And will there be another game?
It’s so funny, I was just wearing my Furyion shirt. [Riddick director] David Twohy, he wrote a great screenplay. It’s just a matter of timing when we have the opportunity to shoot this. But I think we’re shooting this in Australia. And that would be the fourth chapter in this series, which would be great. And we had great success with Escape From Butcher Bay. Seems like forever ago now. But, I imagine we would take advantage of the play space and add an extra chapter, but definitely, the [movie’s] the script is already written. So it’s safe to say that we are heading towards the filming of the fourth chapter of Riddick.
Fast and Furious 9 is in theaters now. For more on Diesel, be sure to check out our article on the making of Fast and Furious 9, including interviews with Diesel, John Cena, and director Justin Lin.