It seems like F. Gary Gray could be headed straight outta Compton and straight into the director’s chair for the next installment of the Fast & Furious franchise.
Entertainment Weekly reported that out of a shortlist of directors including Louis Leterrier (The Incredible Hulk) and Adam Wingard (The Guest), Gray, 46, is the #1 candidate that Universal Studios has its eye on to direct the upcoming Furious 8. To further heat up speculation, the news of Gray’s new gig may have been confirmed by one of the film’s stars, Vin Diesel, after he posted a pic of himself, Gray and multiple shots of scenes from the previous Fast & Furious movies on his Facebook page. The two worked together for the film A Man Apart.
Diesel’s Fast & Furious co-star Michelle Rodriguez spoke with E! News about the upcoming eighth installment of the franchise. Noting that fallen actor Paul Walker’s memory was a large part of the decision to “move on and take it seriously,” she also expressed the importance of having a good director at the helm.
“Us as a cast, I think we need a reason and it needs to have heart, so hopefully we’ll find it, you know?” she said. “And somebody who’s passionate about directing it. I think that’s the most important thing. Finding a good director.”
Gray is also reportedly being considered to direct Marvel’s Black Panther. After the runaway success of this summer’s smash hit, Straight Outta Compton, as well as his experience with directing action films like The Italian Job and The Negotiator, Gray could likely create a work of art for any movie thrown his way.