Fast & Furious 10 is speeding towards a budget that has reportedly ballooned to make the next chapter in the Fast Saga one of the most expensive movies ever produced. Fast X, the 10th installment of the highest-grossing franchise in Universal Pictures history, changed lanes when five-time Fast filmmaker Justin Lin unexpectedly exited the driver’s seat just days into production over a reported blowup with star and producer Vin Diesel. Following reports the studio was spending upwards of $1 million a day shooting second-unit photography while searching for a replacement director, Universal tapped The Transporter’s Louis Leterrier to take over from Lin and steer the first part of its Fast finale to the finish line.
A “constantly changing” script and a final “major disagreement” with the micro-managing Diesel pushed Lin to quit Fast X as director, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Lin, who is staying on as a producer of the film he co-wrote with screenwriter Dan Mazeau, decided Fast X is “not worth my mental health,” according to the report.
What started as a small-scale action film about a fast family of street-racing thieves in 2001’s The Fast and the Furious has become a series of expensive blockbusters with larger-than-life stunts. The Fast X budget was approaching upwards of $300 million before marketing and publicity spend, sources told THR.
At least $100 million of that is above-the-line costs — top talent including producers, the director, and actors — with “high seven and eight-figure” salaries for an ensemble cast that includes Charlize Theron, franchise newcomers Jason Momoa and Brie Larson, and Fast Saga regulars Michelle Rodriguez, Ludacris, and Tyrese Gibson.
According to THR, those figures “pale in comparison to the fees” owed to Diesel as the leading man and creatively-involved producer. A reported budget of $300 million-plus puts Fast X among the most expensive movies in history.
Atop the list is 2011’s Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides ($379 million), Marvel Studios ensembles Avengers: Age of Ultron ($365m), Avengers: Endgame ($356m), and Avengers: Infinity War ($325m), followed by Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End ($300m) in a tie with Warner Bros. and DC’s troubled Justice League. (The James Wan-directed Furious 7 and 2017’s The Fate of the Furious tie to rank #17 on the list with estimated budgets of $250 million.)
Starring Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Ludacris, Jordana Brewster, Nathalie Emmanuel, Sung Kang, Charlize Theron, Jason Momoa, and Brie Larson, Universal’s Fast X opens in theaters on May 19, 2023.