Nathalie Emmanuel on initially being 'intimidated' by Fast & Furious, pitching an all-female spin-off
Despite playing world-class hacker Ramsey in the last three Fast & Furious movies, Nathalie Emmanuel is admittedly still no tech expert.
"I get locked out of email all the time," the actress told EW's BINGE: The Fast Saga hosts Derek Lawrence and Chanelle Berlin Johnson. "I'll be honest, I was slightly late to logging on because I couldn't get into my email on this laptop. That happened immediately before we started speaking. So I'm not even joking, I have to AirDrop the link from my email from my phone to this laptop in order to come on. I've learned how to do AirDrop, though!"
Emmanuel's relationship with Fast & Furious pre-dates her being cast in 2015's Furious 7, with her first viewing of 2001's The Fast and the Furious leaving a mark on her at an early age. "It was at a friend's house, and I just remember being blown away by the way that this movie had so much diversity," she says. "I had never seen that before, and I remember that really impacting me. I was probably slightly too young to watch it, so that's why it was at a friend's house; it wasn't in cinema, because my mom would not have approved of that. [Laughs]"
The Game of Thrones alum hadn't seen all of the subsequent films when first approached to audition for the role of Ramsey, so she appreciated both the chance to binge-watch them all (too bad she didn't have BINGE: The Fast Saga back then!) and the opportunity to play a "brilliant, smart, and capable" character.
"I often feel so attracted to women who are so undeniably talented, and Ramsey is absolutely that," says Emmanuel. "On a personal level, because of the impact that Fast & Furious has had for me as a woman of mixed Black heritage, and seeing the diversity of those movies and how they grow, being a part of that huge impact that those movies have across the entire world was just so exciting. The idea that someone might one day see me and feel represented the way that I did when I was a kid."
While she couldn't have been more excited to be stepping into this world, Emmanuel still found herself nervous as she prepared for her first scene in Furious 7, which found her surrounded by the entire main cast.
"It was terrifying, I'm not even going to pretend," she recalls. "All of these guys I've just grown up watching, whether it was in the Fast movies, or in the many, many projects they'd all done. It was a bit like, 'These are Hollywood movie stars, and then there's me.' I remember being quite intimidated, but I also had such a warm welcome by them. Straightaway it was like, 'Oh, you're just one of us now.'"
No one could have expected what the Furious 7 experience would be like for everyone involved, considering longtime star Paul Walker died in an automobile accident during a break from filming. Production was immediately put on hold and the future of the project was unclear. The cast and crew eventually returned to complete Furious 7, which served as an emotional goodbye to Walker and his character, Brian O'Conner. Shortly after the record-breaking success of 7, Fast got to work on The Fate of the Furious, the first film without Walker since 2006's The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift.
"I think the desire to make [the films] as great as possible was already through the roof, but it just went up stratospherically," explains Emmanuel. "I think after that incredibly devastating loss, coming back to do 8, where we were just coming back to this whole new story, we had a new director… I think some of that momentum of, 'We've got to make this great, we've got to keep going' just followed us. Obviously Paul was such a huge part of it, and he still lives within it, so we wanted to be able to keep his memory alive and just keep experiencing the joy that we do when we're together and making these movies."
As Emmanuel became an integral part of a massive franchise like Fast, she was simultaneously a major presence on possibly the biggest show in television history, a.k.a. Game of Thrones. Ironically, Fate of the Furious featured one of Emmanuel's Thrones costars in Kristofer Hivju (Tormund!) and filmed some scenes in Iceland, a location also used on the series. And yet, the actress has still never spoken to Hivju on-camera or been to Iceland.
"I think when we reached Winterfell [in the final season], we were in the same room, but there was no conversation; I would love to know how that conversation [would have] went," she says with a laugh. "The Iceland stuff [in Fast], we shot in a carpark in Atlanta, in 100 degree weather. Tyrese [Gibson] is the only one that went, and it's funny because he is like … Sorry, Tyrese, but, he is not one for the cold. He's not built for it. I just thought it was so funny that of all of us, it was Tyrese that got sent to Iceland.'
Speaking of Gibson, since her introduction, Ramsey has been positioned in the middle of a possible love triangle alongside Gibson's Roman and Ludacris' Tej. And, like her character, Emmanuel can't pick one.
"They are both very attractive, capable, leading men in their own right - who could choose?" she says. "I'll be honest, I always loved the fact that she's not connected to any of the people in a kind of personal relationship way. But, if I was to pick somebody for Ramsey... it's so hard. But just purely on interest, it would probably be Tej. But sometimes people want to date the person who does absolutely the opposite of what they do, so I don't know."
Emmanuel may like that Ramsey isn't tied to anyone in the films via a personal relationship, but that doesn't mean she isn't wishing for some more backstory - and she has a dream choice for the actor to help provide a window into that.
"I tell you who, just because I love her and I know her and I want to work with her, is Lashana Lynch," she says of the "badass" Captain Marvel star, who Emmanuel thinks would be perfect as Ramsey's London-based best friend. "I want a girl spin-off. We find a way to bring everybody back, and we make of a badass girl Fast movie. I'm so here for that. That's the Fast spin-off that I want, that I demand!"
To listen, subscribe to EW's BINGE: The Fast Saga feed via Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you get your podcasts. You can also subscribe to EW's YouTube page to catch all the video interviews, and stay tuned to EW.com for even more Fast coverage, including next Friday's chat with John Cena about F9.
FULL EPISODE TRANSCRIPT
Nathalie Emmanuel: I remember seeing the first one and it was at a friend's house, and I just remember being blown away by the way that this movie had so much diversity. It was like this really cool movie, and I was like, "What?" I had never seen that before. I remember that really impacting me on a personal level because of the impacts that Fast and Furious had for me as a woman and a woman of mixed black heritage. The idea of just being a part of that huge story and just that huge impact that those movies have across the entire world was just so exciting. The idea that someone might one day see me and feel represented the way that I did when I was like a kid. That was also just on a personal level, why I was so like, "I really love to get this part."
Audio: Saw that look in his eye. Seen that look before, Dominic Toretto just went rogue.
Derek Lawrence: As any podcaster, any real podcaster, it doesn't matter if you record in-person or over video chat, podcasting's podcasting. Welcome back to EW's BINGE of the Fast Saga. Full transcripts of which are available at ew.com. I'm Derek Lawrence, aka the guy who went as Dominic Toretto for two straight Halloweens. As that icon once said, "The most important thing in life will always be the people in this Zoom, right here, right now." And for me, that's the Dom to my Brian, the Letty to my Mia, the Roman to my Tej, the Gisele to my Han. New edition alert, the Ramsey to my Queenie, Chanelle Berlin Johnson. Chanelle, are you ready to talk about the fate of the furious in The Fate of the Furious? I think that checks out is making sense.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Yeah, yeah. It makes sense. I totally get it, and absolutely this movie is, I mean, they're all like adventures, but I feel like this one, the scale jumps even to another level, which is interesting after us having to rewatch all the franchise kind of in a row here. It was fascinating to get to this one, of course, which comes after this big emotional movie. And now, this just like this hardcore adventure that has betrayal and all this kind of stuff.
Derek Lawrence: They went to both Antarctica and Cuba. I mean, they're really just on both sides. It was Beyonce, Jay-Z, and Fast and Furious. That's who got into Cuba when it opened up briefly. That's what level they were on at that point. But before we get into a Fate of the Furious as a refresher for any new listeners who maybe you waited until Dame Helen Muir and joined the team, I don't know. But ahead of F9's June 25th release, we're binging all of the Fast movies with the family themselves. We've already chatted about the first seven installments. So you can go back and check out her interviews with Vin Diesel, Ludacris, Lucas Black, Justin Lin, Jordana Brewster, Sung Kang, Tyrese Gibson, and Michelle Rodriguez. I mean, what a mouthfeel that was like-
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Yeah. What a line-up.
Derek Lawrence: ... I can't believe we've already talked to all those people and then there's still so much more to come.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Gosh.
Derek Lawrence: Essentially, there's we're only one week away from finally getting our hands on F9. So that's, wow. And I'm just going to tease, like we've got some bangers lined up like this, if you think that list was crazy, just wait. So we're one week away from F9. So that means today we're breaking down the last installment of before what we get next, which is The Fate of the Furious, and helping us do so is the one and only, Natalie Emmanuel, who ironically plays a character with one and only name, that being Ramsey. So just fitting. Chanelle, before we get into our really fun conversation with Natalie, who was a delight, what do people need to remember about The Fate of the Furious?
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: I already said this one is packed. It's billed as the movie where Dom turns on the family, which is interesting to do after the emotions of seven. I mean, what a hook I was already in, as soon as you see the trailer. But it opens with Dom and Letty on their honeymoon in Havana, and while there Dom encounter Cipher who pretends at first to be a regular lady, but then quickly we learned that she's trying to get Dom to work for her. And she convinces him by showing him something on her phone, which the audience doesn't see at first. So Dom assembles a team alongside Hobbs, then betrays them for stealing an EMP for her. Of course, everybody's shocked, heartbroken, feeling super betrayed, and they work with Mr. Nobody to help stop Dom and Cipher. Mr. Nobody also brings in Shaw because he has a connection to Cipher through his brother Owen, taking the job in Fast 6, that Deckard says he turned down.
We also find out eventually that Cipher's leverage is that she's holding Elena hostage and surprise, surprise, the son who she had with Dom, who Dom also did not know about until this incident. That's why Dom's like, "All right, I'm going to go along with this craziness." There's tons of adventure. This goes all over the place. But during that, Elena sadly dies. There's insane computerized cars, tsunami thing with that has like raining cars, Shaw fakes his death with help from Queenie and Dom. Of course, Helen Mirren, big, big moment from her joining the franchise, they disarm a submarine. Then they try to outdrive a submarine. There's so, so much. But in the end, of course, Dom does rejoin the family, the team wins, and we get to learn the name of Dom son, which is Brian.
Derek Lawrence: Chanelle, I just want to pause a minute to give the audience a chance to just give you a round of applause. Not just for this one, but you do this every week and you pack so much into these. I don't know how you do it. That was incredible. I just was sitting here as an audience member, listening to you, and I was like, "Oh, this is... Oh, I forgot that happened, that happened, that happened." Well done every week, but especially this week.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Thank you. Thank you. I honestly, it's amazing for me to sit back and try to think just how much happens in these movies, especially when you go from sort of the simplicity of the first, we were like, I don't know, they're thieves and DVDs are involved and stuff like that. To now, just the way these travel the world with every movie.
Derek Lawrence: Yeah. I'd have to go back and look at your first summary of that initial movie, but I have to imagine it was much shorter. They keep getting longer and longer as we go, and so even more and more impressive as we go from you. But like you said, I remember seeing the trailer for the first time and I think this was the first time they did a big launch. I remember, I think they were in New York City. They kind of took over Time Square. They broadcasted it live on, I think it was NBC. And I felt like a big moment, I mean, then they replicated with F9. They took over the super bowl in Miami and did a big concert events.
They go big on the trailers and it started with this one. I remember being like, "Wait a minute, Dom Toretto just went rogue." As I quoted the great Luke Hobbs. That's like, "Oh my, I can't believe they're doing it," but all right, let's see what happens. And we are about to see what happens in this episode when we break it all down. So stay tuned after our interview because like always Chanelle and I will hop back on to hand out some Fast awards, but now let's hack into our conversation with Natalie Emmanuel.
Audio: Oh, she's sick. Going to have to do better than that, though.
Okay. Now, you're starting to piss me off.
How do you like this?
Derek Lawrence: We're not going to leave without saying goodbye, but first, we're saying hello to Natalie Emmanuel, aka Ramsey, last name still TBD to come on and talk about The Fate of the Furious. Natalie, welcome to our binge of Fast and Furious.
Nathalie Emmanuel: Thanks for having me.
Derek Lawrence: Yeah, absolutely. The second-best title, I think in the whole franchise. I mean, 2 Fast 2 Furious, I think that's just unbeatable. Nothing can be done to top that.
Nathalie Emmanuel: Very strong.
Derek Lawrence: I know. I still keep waiting for... I was hoping that F9, there was some pun or wordplay that could have been done, but I couldn't think of one myself. So I was like, "Okay. I mean, if I can't think of one F9 words."
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: That makes sense.
Nathalie Emmanuel: Well, I guess F8 was like Fate, F8 and like F9 is like fine. So something with the word nine and-
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: True.
Derek Lawrence: Oh, okay.
Nathalie Emmanuel: ... I don't know, it doesn't quite work, but it could is all what [crosstalk 00:07:49].
Derek Lawrence: I mean, the joke I've seen on the internet is that 10 has to be like fasten your seat belts. Like that's what we got to do for 10 if they haven't locked that in yet.
Nathalie Emmanuel: I have fully endorsed that. I'm a huge fan of puns. So I love that.
Derek Lawrence: Oh, awesome. Well then you're really going to enjoy the show then, I think. So like I said, we're talking Fate of the Furious. In every episode, we start off the same way. Because a great man named Dominic Toretto once said, he lives his life a quarter-mile at a time, for those 10 seconds or less he's free. So how would you summarize Fate of the Furious in 10 seconds?
Nathalie Emmanuel: Okay. We think Dom betrays us, but he has other plans.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: That's perfect.
Derek Lawrence: I mean, that did it. That did the job.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: What's the first thing that you think of when you think back to Fate of the Furious? What is this sort of the first thing that comes to mind for you from the movie?
Nathalie Emmanuel: Ooh, the first thing that comes to mind, I don't know why this happens, but I always just think about the first day of set and it was just the scene after we think Dom's gone rogue and we're all in the garage and I'm doing my tech thing and Letty and Ramsey kind of bump heads. I felt like that was our first proper scene. I always think about that. Also, just because it was quite a tense scene and obviously there were so many other aspects to that movie. But whenever I think about the experience of that movie, I was thinking about the first day and it was quite a big intense scene for our first day of shooting.
Audio: He took out Hobbs, he stole an EMP. Now, he's disappeared.
So what are you saying?
Maybe we should consider the fact that Hobbs is right. Dom did go rogue.
Before you judge the man, remember you're breathing right now because he saved your life.
Nathalie Emmanuel: So when I think about the film itself, I think, I mean, this is... We can say spoilers that maybe came out, [crosstalk 00:09:50] then like, "Why you here, seriously?" But obviously, Fast 8 it's like the family grows, just really significantly. A little [crosstalk 00:10:04] cutie boy.
Derek Lawrence: Like I said, we're going to dig into Fast 8, but I think maybe we'll start by taking a step back. Obviously, Furious 7 is when you first show up. Before you were cast, were you a fan of the movies? Did you have any relationship to the Fast world?
Nathalie Emmanuel: Yeah, absolutely. I mean, honestly, I hadn't seen all of them, but I remember seeing the first one and it was at a friend's house and I just remember being blown away by the way that this movie had so much diversity and it was this really cool movie. I was like, "What? I had never seen that before." And I remember that really impacting me. That was my first kind of introduction. I remember... I can't remember how old I was. I was probably slightly too young to watch it. So that's why it was at a friend's house. It wasn't in cinema because my mom [crosstalk 00:11:03] really approved of that. I saw some of them, but not all of them. So when I got the part, I ended up just binge-watching all of them and it was a great weekend in bed basically. Then I was like, "I'm working guys. I'm working, I've got all this research to do," but really I was just binge-watching the entire movies, which was a really good weekend.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: That's how I felt about rewatching them as we were preparing for this podcast. I was like, "Oh yeah, I'm working. I'm just watching these movies. I've seen a bunch of love so much."
Nathalie Emmanuel: Yeah, exactly.
Derek Lawrence: I mean, that's just a great advertisement. Now, we're going to pull that clip, everyone here, even the stars are binge in the movies like you go binge them too. Stars, they're just like us. So what made you want to play Ramsey? When it comes to you when they bring this to you?
Nathalie Emmanuel: Well, firstly, I just thought Ramsey was such an interesting character. She's so brilliant. She's so smart and capable and I love playing women like that. I do. I often feel so attracted to women who are so undeniably talented and Ramsey is absolutely that. And I just thought that it was really cool how she kind of comes into the group and she has created a whole mess of a situation. She might be smart, but she needs some help and she's kind of got herself in a sticky situation. I just liked how smart and quick-witted she was, and on a personal level, because of the impacts that Fast and Furious had for me as a woman and a woman of mixed black heritage, and seeing the diversity of those movies and seeing how they grown.
The idea of just being a part of that huge story and just that huge impact that those movies have across the entire world was just so exciting. And the idea that someone might one day see me and feel represented the way that I did when I was a kid. That was also just on a personal level, why I was so like, "Oh, I'd really love to get this part because that'd be really fun." But I definitely, like I said, I'm just attracted to incredibly capable, talented women as an incredibly capable and talented woman.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Of course, did they tell you that the Ramsey character would have the potential to be in future movies?
Nathalie Emmanuel: Yeah. There was definitely discussion of that. They definitely were like we think this might go on for a couple or a few movies. That conversation came in, but to what degree? I wasn't sure to be honest, because obviously, in terms of her skill set, they have Tej already. Who knows how valuable she would be, but it turns out very,
Derek Lawrence: What was it like walking in? This is like, obviously family's the theme of not just during the films, but it feels like off-screen Too. What was it like as the new kid kind of walking into this very established family?
Nathalie Emmanuel: It was terrifying. I'm not even going to pretend. I also... I don't know, like all of these guys, I just grown up watching whether it was in the Fast movies or in other projects that they had all done. The many, many projects they'd all done. And I was just like this, I don't know. I just felt like I'm this kind of girl from Southend-on-Sea in England, just arrived. It just was a bit like, "These are Hollywood movie stars and then there's me," and I remember being quite intimidated, but I also had such a warm welcome by them and it was straight away. It was like, "Oh, you're just one of us now." And straight away, the energy was just super easy and really fun. I had met Vin before at the screen test and he was just an excited, just like kid in a way, just so like had so much energy.
And I was like, "Oh my God. That was so great. Thank you so much and was just so lovely." And I was like, "Oh, okay. Great." And it was just... So I already felt like such a huge support from everybody, which was really lovely. Then there's also that part of it as well when you're coming into something new where you... Well, something established as the new person where you all of the kind of anxiety that we all have like, "Oh, my. Will people like me, will I do a good job?" Blah, blah, blah.
I had to kind of have a bit of a word with myself. That was the kind of conversation with me, and I had to... There's a mental game sometimes where you have to tell yourself like, "They auditioned a lot of people and they chose you and you are worthy to be here and you are..." Sometimes the intrusive thoughts can be overwhelming, and I basically had to be like, "Natalie, you can do this, you did your audition, they chose you. They're nice people, just have fun," and had to kind of make that part of my brain be quiet.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: So the first scene then, was that with everyone involved? Because that has to be part of the nerves too, I'm sure. It's like you show up and they're all there the first day, but once you got into it with them, did you feel sort of comfortable after the first day? Or were there still nerves a little of it?
Nathalie Emmanuel: No, I mean the first day was literally the scene where after Dom drives Ramsey and himself off of a cliff, and then she wake up by the side of the lake, like swamp thing. And she basically just tells each person who they are? That was my first scene in these movies. It was like, "Okay. So we're just going to have these higher main costs and you're going to have to be really smart and confident and just tell them about themselves in a way," that's your first day ever. Like I said, there was some conversations that needed to happen in the trailer before I came to the set, but just immediately, like I said, everyone was so warm and lovely and enabled me to just breathe out and just be a part of it and enjoy the day.
To be honest, like very, very quickly you just get into the running of shooting because the kind of day flows and it's like, "Okay. We're going to turn around and you kind of big the technical elements of it, kind of become a part of it." And then you're not thinking so much, you're just kind of doing and it was a really fun day, but I remember falling asleep immediately when I got home because I was so like the adrenaline and the excitement, I was so exhausted. I got home and [crosstalk 00:18:08] till my call the next day, I just like out cold.
Derek Lawrence: Obviously, the conclusion of filming Furious 7 was obviously so difficult just following the loss of Paul and I'm sure there was a very somber tone as you guys all work to finish that film. So what was it like returning to filming for Fast 8? Did everyone seemed ready to get back to kind of having fun and feel like this renewed energy maybe?
Nathalie Emmanuel: Yeah. I mean, I think because of losing Paul, the films, and finishing seven, but the saga itself kind of just the... They were important to everybody anyway and important to the fans, but I think the desire to make them as great as possible just was already through the roof, but it just went kind of stratospherically. We were just like, "We need to make this great." And I think after that, just incredibly devastating loss coming back to do eight where we were just kind of coming back to this whole new story. We had a new director and we were just like, "Oh, I think some of that momentum of like, you've got to make this great, we've got keep going and just kind of followed us and we'd all kind of missed each other."
Even though we keep in touch and see each other through the years, it was definitely like, we were excited to kind of be back and to be continuing the saga because obviously Paul was such a huge part of it and he lives still within it. So we wanted to be able to keep his memory alive and just keep experiencing the joy that we do when we're together and when we're making these movies. I think that definitely we came back with such a huge kind of gusto and like, "Yes, come on." So it was really lovely to return actually.
Derek Lawrence: Yeah. I think that's why it's so touching then too. The film literally ends with the reveal of Dom naming the baby, Brian. And even though if you really think about it, you're like, "Oh well, Brian's still around technically, but it doesn't even matter." You're just like, "Oh my God, this is the sweetest thing I've seen since he had a Furious 7." So you get the script for Fast 8. Was there one thing you were most excited about as you're turning those pages?
Nathalie Emmanuel: Many things. I definitely was excited for Ramsey specifically because she kind of head-to-head with her... I don't want to say hero, but even though Cipher is a bad person, there is just a mutual respect of the sheer genius that goes into creating what Cipher has created, and Ramsey has experience of that. She's created something that essentially could really hurt a lot of people. And I think she's like this folklore or something excited, this person, it's almost like the myth and the legend. And the idea that I got to even for a brief moment got to kind of go toe-to-toe with her. I just thought that was really cool. I think obviously then when I learned who's playing Cipher, I was incredibly excited and I just thought that was really badass and it was just kind of like, again, another really brilliant woman. Although her agenda and intentions aren't good, there was just something about the brilliance of these two women just going toe-to-toe.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Did you get to meet Charlize? I think there's just like the one scene where she comes in. I think face to face with [crosstalk 00:22:01].
Nathalie Emmanuel: Yeah. I met her a couple of times. We didn't get to shoot too much together, but huge fan. I had to just play it cooler than I am right now, but she's just iconic. And she was so sweet, I was very kind of like, " [inaudible 00:22:20]," afterwards.
Derek Lawrence: I love that she walks in and obviously, she's one of our greatest actors out there and an Oscar winner. But she comes in and she just seamlessly fits it, and she knows what movie she's in. Instantly, off the bat and she just really goes for it. So I mean, first, you hear Charlize Theron is going to be in the movie, but then what about you here at Dame Helen Mirren is also going to be in the movie? I know my mind's blown for both of those. Are you the same way, especially when Dame Helen's added to the mix?
Nathalie Emmanuel: I mean, yes, Helen and I are actually from similar parts of... She's from the next town from me.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Oh, wow.
Nathalie Emmanuel: So for me, coming from such a small British seaside town and Helen Mirren, who I think she went to, I might be wrong, Helen, if I get this wrong, I'm so sorry. But I feel like she actually went to her primary school that used to be on my road where I grew up and she goes to a high school, like around the corner and that I almost went to, but I didn't end up going there. She was just one of the people that I was so inspired by, because she from this small town and became this huge, successful, very talented, celebrated actor, and we were from the same place pretty much. So when I saw that she was in it... I didn't get to work with her but I went to set one of the days that she was in, I was like, "Oh, I'm just going to... I just needed to come." Just made my excuses basically. Hello, Mirren.
Derek Lawrence: Well, that was... We had Sung on and he was saying that on F9, he went home for a week or something. He was off and he comes back and he goes into his trailer and it turned out that Helen had used his trailer while he was gone. And he was in awe, like he said, she left some tea behind. So he made sure he's like, "All right, what? I have to have this tea that Helen Mirren left behind."
Nathalie Emmanuel: Ah, I wish I had Helen's tea. [crosstalk 00:24:30].
Derek Lawrence: Yeah. Talked to Sung maybe he kept some.
Nathalie Emmanuel: I know, I'm like, " [inaudible 00:24:33] to yourself, didn't you? Share the love, man." Get out, come on now.
Derek Lawrence: Helen, it feels like she actually campaigned, it seemed like to be in these movies. She so [inaudible 00:24:43], she just wanted to get behind a car-
Nathalie Emmanuel: And there she was like, "I want to be in a car..."
Derek Lawrence: ... Yeah. And she hadn't gotten the chance to drive yet through either Fast 8 or Hobbs and Shaw. So I had asked then I was like, "So Fast 9, does she get to drive?" Because in the trailer we see her behind the wheel, but parked, and he said that she does get to drive, which we're all thankful for. Now my question is when did you get to drive? You're always riding shotgun in every scenario.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: There was a clip that you and Vin posted from set where you talked about an action sequence, but it wasn't clear if it was you driving in the sequence. So I'm like, "What is it?"
Nathalie Emmanuel: I don't want to ruin it. I don't want to say but it's pretty fun though.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: What was it like in general then to just do some more of the action and sort of help drive that a little bit, whether you're in a car or not?
Nathalie Emmanuel: Oh, it's so fun and we have such an amazing stunt team and stunt coordinators and they obviously take care of us and make sure we're safe and everything like that. The way that they shoot these scenes, it's like they have the amazing kind of stunt performers who do the really dangerous stuff, and then they kind of isolate things that they want to get with us. But some of them are still pretty dangerous and still pretty tough on the body and we just have to trust the process, and it's hard but it's so much fun. Because when you think about when you... Because what happens is the director will show you, so Justin, on this movie, will show you the sequence that's already been shot or the previous, and you kind of get an idea of what is going to happen.
Then what they're trying to capture to integrate with it, and already you're like just it's so much bigger and so much crazier than you can imagine in your own head sometimes. And then like when... But then when I've watched the movie, I'm going to be... My mind will be blown again further. So it's all very technical and I guess it's just like you have to concentrate just on lots of things, but it's really fun and I enjoy it. Vin and I had some fun doing some of that stuff together on Fast 9. So I look forward to everyone seeing that and I'm looking forward to seeing that too. Great [inaudible 00:27:06].
Derek Lawrence: Speaking of things that are hard to imagine, probably we see them on paper. I would think like Iceland and like a submarine and like a car chase or probably hard to believe that you're going to pull that off. I guess, first off on a scale of one to 10, how jealous were you that you didn't get to go to Cuba? You're like, "Oh, you're sending us to Iceland, but not Cuba."
Nathalie Emmanuel: Well, I didn't get to Iceland either, by the way.
Derek Lawrence: Oh, really?
Nathalie Emmanuel: No. Listen, I was so upset, I didn't get to go to Cuba, honestly. I was like, "Oh, okay. Fine." But it was honestly like, it's okay. Like I can, I will go to Cuba at some point, but I think it was just because there was... Especially with the country had just opened up and then it closed again. So now I'm like, "Ah." Obviously, I hope in the future, I have the opportunity to go and not just work. I'd like to actually go and enjoy and experience it as a country. But the Iceland stuff, interestingly, we shot in a car park in Atlanta-
Derek Lawrence: Oh wow.
Nathalie Emmanuel: ... in a hundred-degree weather.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Oh, wow.
Nathalie Emmanuel: Yeah. So now, I didn't get to go to Iceland. I got to wear the clothing [crosstalk 00:28:25] Iceland but in summer in Atlanta.
Derek Lawrence: Yes. I think only Tyrese... Because I remember, I think Tyrese definitely went, I don't know it seems like-
Nathalie Emmanuel: Tyrese is the only one that went and it's like [inaudible 00:28:36] because he is like... Sorry, Tyrese. But he is not one for the cold, he's not good for it. I just thought it was so funny that of all of us, it was Tyrese that they got sent to Iceland, and I just remember finding that very funny. I love you, Tyrese. I'm sorry but...
Derek Lawrence: ... And then It fit the character though, too. Roman also would be the last person who would want to go to Iceland. So I felt like that just is fitting all around.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: And those lines where he complains are just natural to him. Like those were real.
Nathalie Emmanuel: Yeah, I think [inaudible 00:29:12]. But we sadly didn't get to go to either place, but I'm... An interest like I haven't ever been to Iceland and I feel like I've done a couple of jobs now where Iceland was location. [crosstalk 00:29:26].
Derek Lawrence: That's true. That's a good point. I mean, I think that's leads... You mentioned other jobs that maybe would have led you to Iceland that didn't. We talked about Helen and Charlie's, Christopher's also in this movie as Cipher's henchman, Rhodes. Obviously, at the same time, you guys are both starting in a little show called Game of Thrones. Was that kind of wild that you both ended up on this?
Nathalie Emmanuel: Yeah. It was really fun to work on a move, another thing with Chris, I mean, obviously we didn't have any scenes together, but it was really fun seeing him around and having kind of men hung out before. It was always nice to have someone you have worked with before and spent time with. It was great fun.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: I think in that same vein like in this movie, Ramsey and Deckard actually get to interact. He saves her life at one point. So what was it like? Statham was obviously in seven, but those were mostly action scenes, I think, where you're even around each other. What was it like to sort of work more closely with someone like him? And Kurt Russell too who's also huge in this movie.
Nathalie Emmanuel: I mean, obviously just so cool. I mean, as a British person and an actor and I've watched Jason Statham movies and watched to hit his star rise. It's just really exciting when you get to work with people like Kurt Russell and Dwayne and Jason. It was really... I thought it was actually amazing how they made Jason a hero after we'd spent a whole movie kind of like, "He's the enemy, he's this dangerous person." And actually, he had this kind of other intentions, which was pretty cool.
It was lovely to do scenes with Jason and with Kurt. I mean, to such they're really lovely people as well and were really such a joy to work with. I feel like with both of them, I have to... Like just anyone, I have to stop myself from asking a thousand questions. Like really fast because I just want to know things about what they experienced and their lives, but they were both very warm and open and generous people. So it was a real pleasure and it's always just a little surreal, just always. I hope that feeling never quite use me because it's all a part of... It makes it feel really special because I'm like, "Oh, wow. I'm so excited to work with this person."
Derek Lawrence: You mentioned earlier that obviously Tej, so Luda's got a lot of the tech stuff. He was the tech guy, then you come in and you're dealing with a lot of the same things. What's it like having to deliver all this tech jargon? Anytime there's a movie or show when they're doing this, I just assume it's all right because I can not comprehend what they're saying. We talked to Tyrese and he's like, "I'm glad I'm not the one having to do that." So do you even understand what you're saying half the time?
Nathalie Emmanuel: I actually, tried to find out what I'm saying and I tried to look up and try and understand even if... Because sometimes you Google things and it doesn't quite translate in the way that you would hope. But sometimes actually they have people they consult on these things with. I will actively try and find out what it is I'm actually describing if I can't find out myself online or get an idea of it. But it's really challenging to learn because it's not in any way my expertise, I get locked out of my email all the time. I'll be honest, I was slightly late to logging on because I couldn't get into my email this afternoon.
Like realize that's not just that happened immediately before we started speaking. I'm not even joking, I had to airdrop the link from my email, from my phone to this laptop in order to [inaudible 00:33:14]. So there you go. I've learned how to do airdrop, guys. For me, to understand in a way and have almost draw a visual image of what it is I'm describing. It helps me learn it and it helps me kind of have an understanding of what I'm saying. That can also just add to the performance of it because often with this kind of exposition stuff where it's just kind of information, it can very easily just sound a little like I'm just relaying information, but sometimes if you can try and have, or create your own understanding of it, that can just make it more interesting, kind of feel more relaxed.
Audio: Wait a second, wait, wait, simple solutions might just cut it. You see, in order for God's out to give off all these false pings, it means they have to be using a flea relay.
Watch these two.
Which means it has a decaying sink randomizer.
Which we can reverse and track it back to the originating source and find Dom's true location.
Telling you they got skills.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: You do a lot of that with Ludacris, and you guys have kind of become like a tag team. You were talking about you weren't sure where Ramsey fit in, in the long term. But now they're kind of a one-two punch always because they're both really smart. They both have different areas of expertise. So what has been like... What's that relationship been like and sort of developing their rhythm as two people who are both very smart and engaged in this way, but also there's like the flirting aspect of it too?
Nathalie Emmanuel: All right. Well, I think that in terms of their expertise, they both are really confident in what they're good at, but there's also a competitiveness between them. Because obviously, Ramsey is a bit younger and she's a millennial type and she's like, "Well, this is what I know," and he's like, "Well, what do you know? Like, this is what I know." And I think there's that kind of competitiveness, which is so much fun to play. I just love Chris to death and he's so sweet and we have great banter, anyway. So it's quite easy for us to bring that to the performance of Tej and Ramsey. It's obvious that they have their own space and that they are experts in. But I think that they really work well together when they're on a roll that they have their own language almost.
And so it's almost they can finish each other's sentences because they're both just so brilliant and they can kind of go, "Oh, yeah," and jump on that, and they kind of complement each other in a way, because he'll throw something out and she's like, "Oh, yeah. We do this." And then he's like, "Oh, yeah. That was great. Let's do this." It's almost like they egging of each other, the egging on that they do kind of almost adds to the idea and then the solution of whatever problem they're trying to come. So it's great fun even like you said, that kind of tech jargon, it's very tough. We have fun with it. We make it fun.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: All right. We're taking a quick detour, but we'll be right back with more.
Nathalie Emmanuel: Now, that we're gassed up, let's drive back into the interview. I would love in one of these competitive scenarios if you just like broke... Ramsey broke the fourth wall, which is just like... When did you even start learning tech? 2 Fast 2 Furious, we didn't see any of this man. I've been at this longer than you. All right. I didn't just started Fast Five doing tech. That would be a great break in the fourth wall moment, I think.
She's like, "Yeah. I know I build a computer when I was like seven," so I don't know.
Derek Lawrence: Yeah. I don't know what you're doing in Miami, but a-
Nathalie Emmanuel: Yeah, right.
Derek Lawrence: ... catch up. We mentioned obviously Tej, but we know there's been this three-person dynamic with Roman in the mix as well. And obviously, there's some great banter and we all have love that, but if you, Natalie are picking for Ramsey, are you team Tej or team Roman?
Nathalie Emmanuel: I hate this question.
Derek Lawrence: You hate it?
Nathalie Emmanuel: The reason why is because they are both very attractive, capable leading men in their own right. Like who could choose? Who could choose? It's so tough. I guess, I'll be honest, I always love the fact that Ramsey as a character, she's kind of not connected to any of the people in a kind of personal relationship way. She came in as someone who had just had a very specific ability and she kind of has earned her... Well, everybody has, but she's kind of just earned her place just purely on talent and on her own genius in a way.
And everyone has... She's not a racer. She's not a driver. If anything, she shouldn't even really be in this group of people, but she is. She's not the car person. She's like, "Oh, I know how to program the car." But I don't know, it's kind of fun for me that she is that person. So there was always a part of me that was like, I liked that she's independent in that respect. She's not a relative or a love interest of anybody. But if I was to pick somebody for Ramsey, just purely... It's so hard, but really on interests, it would probably be Tej. But sometimes people want to date the person who does absolutely the opposite of what they do. So I don't know, it's so hard. I don't know.
Derek Lawrence: I would have loved it if you just went in really off the board, you're just like, "You know what? I've always been like a Mr. Nobody person for..."
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: She met Han and now there's something there.
Derek Lawrence: Well, no, don't even joke about that. He's still mourning Gisele. Come on, Chanelle.
Nathalie Emmanuel: Hell, yeah.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: That's true. Although we don't know exactly how many years it's been for him. So maybe he's ready for something else, but that's okay. That's okay.
Nathalie Emmanuel: We're not ready, too soon. But even late in Fast 8, there's that really funny bit about them. Well, it'd be like, "All right. It's time to pick," and she's essentially like, "Okay. I'll go with whoever knows my last name." Which obviously she knows, they don't know it. Like heads-wise you can just put it like that, and they're completely shook by this.
Audio: I'm asking a real question right now. Is it going to be revenge of the nerds or the dark night?
To be honest, I like both of you.
All right. There you go [crosstalk 00:39:40].
But just before we get into all of that. Let me ask you one question.
You can ask me anything.
Let me think.
Ah, what's my last name? When you guys figure it out, then. I guess you can let me know.
It's going to be Parker. That's all that really matters.
Jones. Mrs. Parker.
Hey, Ms. Parker.
Derek Lawrence: I just assumed Ramsey was her last name and that was just like a thing where you call someone by their last name. So are we confirming then that Ramsey is her first name?
Nathalie Emmanuel: I'm not confirming either way. But it was definitely a question that they didn't know. And she knew this, it's like, "I'm not going to get into all of your silly games. You're kind of man ego, trying to... You don't know anything about me, so what could you possibly be into other than, I don't know, maybe her ability or her appearance. You don't know anything personal about her. You don't even know her name." It was just quite a fun moment for her to just highlight the fact that this was a bit more about them than it was about her.
Derek Lawrence: They really dropped the ball by not at least guessing Ramsey, you know what I mean? Maybe that's not the right answer, but they didn't even guess it.
Nathalie Emmanuel: Well, they hadn't [inaudible 00:41:00].
Derek Lawrence: Yeah. I mean, the Ms. Parker line, I don't know what it is, but it's going to be Ms. Parker by Tej is so good. Every time I laugh at that.
Nathalie Emmanuel: He totally just came up with that and he totally ad-lib that.
Derek Lawrence: I figured that seemed like something that had to be. That's awesome.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Tyrese had told us that they improvise a lot of that stuff. So for you, is it always a kind of a surprise? Like what are they going to say next? Or do you at least have sort of an, I mean, you have an idea of where the scene's supposed to go, but-
Nathalie Emmanuel: Yeah. Of course, there's always just a general kind of understanding of where the scene goes and what the scene's about, but they definitely give us freedom. Often, it's just like we do the scene as scripted and then sometimes we have like a play take where everyone can throw things in and be a bit more just spontaneous, and sometimes those lines come about just as we're doing it and people get ideas and go, "Oh, I'm going to try one more. I throw this in." Then it kind of evolves as we shoot it. And Chris and Tyrese, well, actually everybody, they're all really good at that, but those two especially are really good at throwing in funny little to smart one-liners and other things. I'm always very, very excited to find out what they're going to say because it's sometimes really hard to hold it together because they're very funny, both of them.
Derek Lawrence: Yeah. Wrapping up, we're going to do what we call the final lap. So it kind of be a rapid round of questions. That'll be-
Nathalie Emmanuel: If you ask me that question. I'm going to be so mad.
Derek Lawrence: ... But these will be less specific to Fast 8, but this one will include Fast 8. So if you could pick one actor to add to this movie, obviously it's insane already, the caliber of actors you guys have in this. Now, this could be an actor from one of the previous Fast movies that isn't in Fast 8, or maybe there's just another actor out there that hasn't been in a Fast movie that you would have loved to drop in. Now, we're not replacing anybody. We're just adding someone in.
Nathalie Emmanuel: Ooh, that's really hard. Oh, I tell you who just because I love her and I know her and I just want to work with her is Lashana Lynch because she's fabulous.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Oh, that's a great one.
Derek Lawrence: Oh, man.
Nathalie Emmanuel: And she's a badass.
Derek Lawrence: Yeah. Oh, man.
Nathalie Emmanuel: She's a badass, and I would just love to work with her. She could be like Ramsey's bestie from London.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Yeah, yeah.
Derek Lawrence: Justin and Vin we got two more, we got Fast 10 and 11. Take notes, we always need to add some great new people.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Yeah. Well, that kind of leads into a perfect other one, which is sometimes we ask like if you could have a Ramsey spinoff, or even if you just think about like where Ramsey has been. Because we don't know at the beginning of Fast 8, like the first time we see the team is in Berlin. So we don't know where they've all been. What if you have Lashana Lynch your besties, is that the spinoff movie you would want? Is like their adventures or is there something else?
Nathalie Emmanuel: I want to go spinoff just with everybody. We find a way to bring everybody back and we make a badass girl Fast movie. I'm so here for that.
Derek Lawrence: I mean, that would literally be like the greatest movie of all time. Just imagine the people, Eva Mendes, I've been waiting for her to come back. Get her in the mix. It's an addition, all the people that are still in the movies, it would be insane. That's totally the right answer.
Nathalie Emmanuel: Yeah. I think that would be... That's the Fast spinoff that I want. I demand. You hear that, guys?
Derek Lawrence: Natalie's one demand to come back for the next two films. You got to do that. I mean, you did a little bit earlier, you talked, you may be hinted, maybe we're getting some Ramsey driving, but what would be your teas for Fast 9?
Nathalie Emmanuel: My teas, I think the teas is that we have to take on some previously met enemies and we also bring on some old characters and friends from the past, which for Ramsey is obviously fantastic because she hasn't met them before. And for me, personally.
Derek Lawrence: Who doesn't want to meet Han, I mean, come on, we all do. Is there one thing... We got your demand for a Fast spinoff, but we know we have two more movies after Fast 9. We don't know what's going to happen there, but is there one wish you'd have for Ramsey or for just something you'd like to do before the franchise at least the main films wraps up in with Fast 11?
Nathalie Emmanuel: I mean, I think I always interested to know where people come from and what their story is. So I would love to learn more about Ramsey. I mean, I obviously out of my kind of building of a character is to have an idea of who she is and where she came from, just so I can feel connected to her as a person and a person with a story. And I have my ideas around that, but I would love to actually learn that within a Fast movie because it's interesting how a woman like her becomes the person she is doing, what she's doing. I think there's a lot of really fun, cool stuff to explore and how she ends up in the complete mess that she ended up in Fast 7. And I'd love to know who her parents were and what her upbringing was like, and what led her to the life that she has now and who some of those instrumental people were good and bad.
Derek Lawrence: I think at minimum, we need it. We might need to do a... Vin did the Los Bandoleros before Fast 4, a little short film. Kind of filling in some blanks for dogs. So maybe we need a Ramsey short film. At minimum...
Nathalie Emmanuel: That will origin story.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Yes.
Derek Lawrence: Absolutely. I mean, we need the origin story before we get the spinoff. You know what I mean? Like you need to set that up to really make that work to the best of its ability. Natalie, thank you for joining us and becoming a part of the binge family. We appreciate it.
Nathalie Emmanuel: Oh, it's my absolute pleasure. Thank you for having me, and it's always fun to talk about these movies because we love them so much.
Audio: You've heard me say that you never turn your back on family, and I want to thank you all for never turning it back on me. You want to meet them? All right, everyone meet Brian.
Derek Lawrence: Thank you to Natalie for joining us and hopefully starting the road to an all-female Fast spinoff, because that'd be epic. Chanelle, who wouldn't watch a movie with Natalie Emmanuel, Michelle Rodriguez, Jordana Brewster, Eva Mendes, Gal Gadot, Charlize Theron, and Helen Mirren. Sign me the hell up.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Yeah, yeah. That's absolutely the spinoff I want. Like what crazy adventures that they would get into. I think, especially with every time we learn like little tidbits even about Letty and Mia's past and just how much trouble they used to get into together. There's so much to explore there. I need to know.
Derek Lawrence: And this is not a nowhere like Vin announced a couple of years ago that they were going to do like a female spinoff. I don't think we've heard much about that in the last year or so. So hopefully maybe binge, maybe us, and Natalie's conversation gets the ball roll in there. We don't even need to take a check. We just want to see it. I mean-
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Right, right.
Derek Lawrence: ... if we get a check-in addition when we show up to the screening, that's a different story.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: I won't turn it down, but I'll just be happy to help push it along even at all.
Derek Lawrence: Exactly. While we wait to hear a Vin and Justin Lin, give us a call and get that going. Let's pick some Fate of the Furious winners. Chanelle, as always. What's our first category?
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: We have to, of course, pick who earned our respect, to quote, Brian O'Connor in Fast 1. If I win, I take the money and the respect to some people that's more important. So Derek for this movie, there's a lot of players, who you think wins your respect?
Derek Lawrence: Oh, it's a three-way tie for me. And I can't believe these three people are in this movie and that's part of it. It's perfect that they all will get our respect together. Let me be clear, they all had our respect going into this, and I'm talking about Charlize Theron, Kurt Russell, Helen Mirren, three legends, legends, three very different actors have done very different things throughout their career, all at different stages of their career, but, and all the roads lead to Fast. So all these three award-winning actors I'd have to go see, I have to imagine someone's even Kurt Russell word that they better have, or we will. I mean, we are right now, I guess. So he's finally getting what if he didn't already have some hardware at home, but the reason I picked these three specifically is three-fold fittingly.
One, that they're even in this movie. Two, that they probably got straight paid, like cash money, I mean, and then three that they did it. They had to have done like combined. What do we think like 10 days filming? Helen, she's a one day an [crosstalk 00:50:31]. Like that, or maybe two, because she has the scene in the ambulance with Jason.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: True.
Derek Lawrence: That's max. Kurt, I mean, they literally bring in Scott Eastwood probably because Kurt Russell's like, "Hey, like Goldie has a trip planned. They were going on this summer. So I can give you three days." And what if you came up with a little Nobody just to, "You take my spot." Then Charlize is probably the most, but I mean, she couldn't have been on set that long and it mostly was one set. You know what I mean? We literally just see her on this plane, which obviously we know, it was just some stage somewhere. She got to go to Cuba maybe too. That was like, she had one day at Cuba and the rest just on this plane set. So like you can't beat that job for any of these, right?
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: That's incredible. I think also too, like the fact that I mean, we all know how big these movies have gotten, but I think after seven, especially, and being able to bring these huge names in and with someone like Helen Mirren, these are all people who were excited to be in these movies too. Just like how much prestige... They never are at the Oscars, unfortunately, which we talk about constantly, but just how much respect the movies have among Hollywood and people who are like, "This is a big franchise, but also it seems like a lot of fun." That's something that they just really value too, which is cool to be able to say. Not only did we get these people, like these people want to be here, they want to play with us.
Derek Lawrence: We should mention that's the thing as well. So I guess on four-fold here on why they earn our respect. They all know what movie they're into. You know what I mean? Like they are having a ball and they have it turned up. They know this is a Fast movie, this isn't Monster 2, this isn't The Queen. They're like, "Okay. This is what we're doing. Let's go for it, where not every actor could do that." I don't know, I'm trying to think, Joaquin Phoenix shows up in a Fast movie like that's not going to go well. You know what I mean? That's probably the most extreme example I could think of, but I'm sure there's others. But just not everyone would be able to do what these three do in this movie, in this way. So double respect just because they already had it, and now they've got it in the Fast world from us.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Yep, yep. Absolutely agree.
Derek Lawrence: Next-up, quote of the week, we got some good options here. So I'll read a few Chanelle and then you can toss a few at me too. I mean, this isn't even one specific, I'll just say all the rock and state of digs back and forth at the jail. I didn't even have the time to write them all down because that's just such a memorable back and forth. And I feel like we'll talk more about the dynamic between those two.
Audio: Mr. Nobody, you want to tell me why you just put me in a room with this teen crumpets eating criminal some bitch?
You had a big mouth on a small head. Coming from prisoner 6753.
Derek Lawrence: A lot of these lines, it's just the way they sell them because they're a little cheesy but these actors just bring them home. So when Ciphers' like, "Your team is about to go up against the only thing they can't handle."
Audio: Your team is about to go up against the only thing they can't handle.
Derek Lawrence: Come on, Charlize. Let's go. And then I quoted it earlier, Luke Hobbs, Dominic Toretto just went rogue. That's a trailer line. They're filming that on set and they're like, "Oh, we've got that. That's locked in for the trailer." Then one more for me. I think this actually came up in our Natalie interview and I said, I kind of had a feeling that this had to be ad-libbed by Luda. It's the final scene on the roof at the barbecue when Roman and Tej are competing, wanting a Ramsey to pick. And she's like, "What's my last name?" And then they're kind of, they have no answer. Then Tej is like, "It's going to be Parker. That's all that really matters." And then he's like, "Ms. Parker," which is like, that's a song for anybody who doesn't know, like a rap song. So it just perfectly comes together. So I appreciate. Luda, who would have known he's just got these improv skills like that. I'm impressed.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Yeah, yeah. This movie is filled with so much humor in that way too and these iconic lines. Like you said, feel like trailer lines, but even in the movie, there's still just as epic. I'm not like, "Oh, that's cheesier now." Now, it's still good. I still loved it. But you have lines like, "You want to see the old Dom. Watch." Like that's great. Comes off too. There are a couple moments that sort of call back to Dom in the first movie, where Cipher is taunting him a little bit about his past, which is great as well. There's lines like, "What are you going to apply for a job? Head asshole?" Which is amazing.
Audio: Are you going to apply for a job? Head asshole?
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: They're back and forth, just iconic throughout. Of course, we know what that led to for those characters. I think my favorite though because it just feels so indicative of what this movie is and what this movie is about with everything being about Dom in a way that it hasn't quite been for the last few movies before this, which is first on the plane after that kiss happens and Cipher and Dom are going back and forth about it. At one point, Dom says to her, "The problem with putting your foot on a tiger's neck is you can never let it up."
Then there's a payoff in the big submarine. They're out in the Antarctic, all that shenanigans where Dom kills Rhodes and says, "He's no longer with us," and then Ciphers like, "Congratulations, Dom, you just killed your son." And Dom literally no worries, no sweat just says, "You're wrong. I just saved him, and you just took your foot off the tiger's neck." And then he has his big heroic moment where he rejoins the team. It's so good. Just that he gets to have that. It's beautiful. I think of it every time I think of this movie.
Audio: Congratulations, Dom, you just killed your son.
You're wrong. I just saved them, and you just took your foot off the tiger's neck.
Derek Lawrence: I love imagining then either coming up with that line or reading it for the first time being like, "Oh yeah, let's go. Let's go."
Audio: This is it.
Derek Lawrence: Like was ready for that one. No, that's a good one. So that's your pick. I don't know for me, there's so many given, but I don't know. I kind of just like, what are you going to apply for a job? Head asshole? That's just makes me chuckle. It such indicative, like I said, of how much Hobbs and Shaw back and forth we get in this one. So some good options, but those are the picks from us. What's next, Chanelle?
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Next up, of course, we got to decide if this was nominated for an Oscar, what would it have been nominated for? And I think both of us agree, this is the toughest one to do that for. The toughest one.
Derek Lawrence: Yeah. Because I think we don't like to repeat awards, we don't want to be like if we've given out best original song already to a Furious 7. There's some, not some bad songs in here. I've obviously know See You Again, but I don't know, we just don't like running it back in that way. So like you said, it was really tough. That's why I think we landed on honorary Oscar. You know what I mean? When all else fails, eight movies in, 6 billion at the box office, everything that the Fast has done for Hollywood over the last 20 years seems like worth an honorary Oscar, am I right?
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Yeah, absolutely. And we talked about the ability for them to get this high caliber, people to come in and do cameos and stuff like that at this point. I think also this being after Furious 7, I don't think there was a ton of pressure actually, but there is a little bit of a question of, how are they going to continue the franchise without Paul and for them to pull off this movie, that was huge. That was fun. I think you just says it's a testament to just how strong the franchise is as a whole. So give them their awards for it.
Derek Lawrence: Yeah. I think you're right. That's not a fact that we haven't talked about that. I remember after Furious 7, everyone's like, "All right. That's it. You should probably just wrap it up there," which if they would have, that would have been an incredible way to go out. I mean, obviously a somber one, but if that See You Again, if Dom and Brian's cars going the separate ways, and then for Paul coming across the screen, if that was the last moment of Fast and Furious, and I would've been bombed, we wouldn't have gotten what's come in, what's still coming. But that would have been such a beautiful way to go out. So the fact that, like you said, that they kept going and that they have kept doing what they're doing.
Like is all that more impressive? So give them that honorary Oscar. Oscar always do that to people that they can't, that they've never... If they'd been laid on someone or if they just never awarded them. So this is their time to appreciate themselves with the Fast family. Next up, maybe my favorite category usually. I love a good heat check. So biggest heat check. The two that came to mind for me, one, Charlize going with the dreads. I really hope that was her idea. I felt like it had to be. Who was like... Who went up was it? I mean, F. Gary Gray, who we should say directed this movie Straight Outta Compton director, but also he worked with Charlize and state them previously on the Italian Job, which I know I've always been a big fan of the Italian Job. I mean, the guy was put in Charlize and state them in cars before anybody.
Maybe he had the relationship with her where he could suggest the dreads, but that just screams Charlize called to me, especially now, when we see her going with a totally different and equally as fun hairstyle in F9, that just seems like it's her call to make. Then number two for me would be the end when it's the big moment where they reveal this Dom's unnamed son who just... What mom never... What did she think? She was like, she didn't know when she'd see Dom, and be able to actually give her kid a name. That's kind of scarring. Imagine he'd just being five years old at kindergarten with no name. I'm like, "Come on, Elena." But naming the kid, Brian, when Brian is still technically around. I get what they... Obviously, we know it's still a great moment. It's really touching and you can't help, but have a smile on your face when you do that. But then when you sit back and think about it, you're like, "Okay. You didn't invite Brian to this big ceremony, announcing his godson is named after him."
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Yeah. He's not even on FaceTime.
Derek Lawrence: Great point. Great call. But I mean, obviously, I said fitting in beautiful tribute, but just for Paul. If we're looking at stuff, we're like, "Oh, okay. You went for it there, you did..." I mean, even if you want it done like Paul, where like we all set home would've known, you know what I mean? We would have been like, "Okay. That doesn't mean anything to the actual characters, but the moments that would've landed for us." But that being said, it's a heat check because it works because it still has the effect they intended.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Yeah. And it's a little bit of a, not in a bad way, but a little bit of a switcheroo for the audience too, because I feel like until they say it, I'm expecting it to be Paul, and then it's Brian. I'm like, "Oh, okay. I guess that works." Especially, when we think back to a Fast Five and the naming of Nico, which is because of Dominic from Vince. So it makes sense but it was a little surprising too. I will say on the Cipher hair, they're like, we don't know anything about her background. So I would absolutely love to know what the thinking is. Is Cipher just like, "This is the vibe all the time. It's just a wild hairstyle. That's the way she has fun other than wreaking havoc across the world." I have to know why dreads and then why a bowl cut. I need to know.
Derek Lawrence: Do you think this franchise just in 20 years where we have Nico versus Brian?
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Oh, that would be fascinating.
Derek Lawrence: Jordana kind of pitched that a little bit. Not quite that version, but you know what? At least what Mia and Brian's kids would be up to and how Mia would be involved with that. I mean, because I get, I think we've mentioned it previously, but does Dom still have eyes on Nico? He said he would. We haven't laid eyes on Nico. Not that I'm like, "Hey, I need to know what's up with Vince's kid." No offense to Vincent. I forget his wife's name, but I'm just saying, maybe Jacob just pulls Nico out of Brazil to help him somehow.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Yeah. I feel like it would be sweet too. In the trailer, we see Dom and Letty, they're out in the country somewhere with their kid. Are they friends? I would love that. It's something.
Derek Lawrence: Nico's probably the new drug lord of Rio, all that money that was left for him. He's probably got up to some stuff. I bet. Maybe that's Fast 11, Nico's got to get taken down by the family.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Oh, my gosh.
Derek Lawrence: Quick on one, we don't have to spend that much time on the why is this person in the movie? I mean, easy one, Scott Eastwood.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Yeah, yeah, absolutely. No shade at all to his performance in the movie, but just the existence of little Nobody, it seems too the team has a room for someone to beat to help them out because of not having the Brian there. And Shaw sort of that, it seems like little Nobody is also sort of trying to be that, but it doesn't also really feel necessary either, which is interesting.
Derek Lawrence: Also, kind of a no-win situation for Scott Eastwood. I mean, he wins the fact that he's in a big movie, probably technically the biggest movie he's ever appeared in. And I'm sure he got a nice little paycheck, but I mean, walking into basically take the place of Kurt Russell because, for whatever reason, he's probably just unavailable. It's like no one can do that. It's Kurt Russell. You know what I mean? That's just, like I said, a no-win situation, and like you said, no shade at Scott Eastwood. Anybody out there seeing Wrath of Man, the Jason Statham movie that just came out? Scotty's was going for it and I respected it. We're not anti-Scott Eastwood on this pod. Just kind of feel like there wasn't a huge need for little Nobody. Maybe that's why F9, it appears like there is a only one Nobody.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: No mention of him.
Derek Lawrence: Yeah. Only one Nobody. So we can move on to the next one, the holy shit moment of the week. I think we've got a few contenders. What are you looking at Chanelle here?
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: There are some huge set pieces. So I remember the first time I saw this movie, everything about that car hacking sequence, was kind of mind-blowing to me. It's the thing that I think one of those things that Fast does really well or take something that is just believable enough and then heightens it. It's incredible to see on screen. Similarly, the prison escape when both Hobbs and Shaw are breaking out beautifully choreographed, so much fun. Everybody's in orange too. It's like the colors are so bright. That's pretty big. I personally, I think of all of the action sequences we were talking about this, like the Statham baby thing on the plane, like that whole sequence is a ton of fun are the biggest ones for me in terms of the set pieces in this movie that made me sort of sit back and awe.
Derek Lawrence: Yeah, no, you're dead right in all those. I think my favorite moment of this movie might be that state, the baby fight. I actually wrote back in 2017, so we had a best-of series where we would talk to the people that put together some of our favorite moments in film and TV in the year, and I got F. Gary Gray on the phone because I was like, "We have to go through this state. The baby fight." I just loved it that much. Like I said, probably my favorite part of the movie. But a different kind of holy shit moment of the week, and I alluded to it in or you did, when we were talking up at the top was the Dom and Cipher kiss, which we get it. It which is I think the ender of the first trailer.
And you're just like, "What the hell?" You're like, "What?" It just has like weird. It was just, obviously, you're like, "Why is... Right in front of Letty, Dom? What do you do it?" And we don't know this Cipher character at the time either. We just know what Charlize and then she's the bad guy. It just also felt weird. I was like, you're just... Were you seeing then just with Michelle and these movies, if there's any romantic stuff and Michelle told us she hates romantic stuff. So maybe it was her idea for a Dom and Cipher to kiss, but it was just like, "What the..." And even in the movie, it's still, you're like, "Oh my God, this is just strange and weird, but it kind of, I guess, works in that way."
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Yeah, yeah. Totally. I think too, coming out of a Furious 7 because so much of that is like finding out that they're married and stuff. So it's like, "All right." When you see the trailer, how do we get to a place where we're supposed to believe that Dom would want to kiss this other person, but then you see the movie and it's like, the context is sort of flipped on its head. It's very manipulative. And even still it's bizarre, even though it's not quite as emotionally sort of wrecking in that way. It's definitely a surprise was not expecting anything like that.
Derek Lawrence: Yeah. So if I had a... If you have to pick one, what would be your ultimate winner of the things of the ones we just discussed?
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: I think for me, it's a tie, I think, between the kiss and the car hacking sequence, both because one is emotionally sort of surprising and the other was just sort of a technical marvel to me.
Derek Lawrence: Yeah. Like I said, I think all of these could work, so I'll go tiebreaker, I'll go with the kiss. I'll roll with the kiss. We're again, towards the end here, quickly we'll do the job rule mistake of the week. For me, and I know for you as well. I think we'll just say that one of our favorite parts of the last few movies was the dynamic between Hobbs and Dom. I mean, whether it's... Their epic face-offs in Fast Five or in Fast 6, when Hobbes shows up and tracks Dom down is like, "It wasn't hard to find you," he's like, "Wasn't hiding." And just that dynamic was perfect in seven. I mean, when Dom goes to see Hobbs in the hospital, that's a really good scene. There was some chemistry there and just a dynamic that the fans really grabbed onto.
Then obviously we know a lot's been talked about, written about maybe some disagreements or whatever, and we don't really get Hobbs and Dom sharing any scenes at all. I think that's just a bummer. I just miss those two characters together. So that being said, obviously, Hobbs went off, did Hobbs and Shaw, The Rock has already said that he is not an F9, but hopefully, I think for all fans' sake that we get some closure there just like we get Dom and Hobbs back together before the series wraps up.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Yeah, I totally agree. I mean, even without rehashing what happened and if there was anybody at fault, none of that stuff, just from a fan perspective, sort of becoming aware of it. It's like, we're so invested in the family of the characters, but then also too, how that extends to the comradery of the actors. So having sort of that illusion burst a little bit was just sad. I can't really think of another way to say it. It's kind of sad. And so things happen, whatever, it's human they've all said that they sort of patched things up since then. So I knew, I hope that eventually, we can see those two characters come back together on screen because they have a really, really special energy.
Derek Lawrence: Yeah, no, totally agree. And I will say when Hobbs and Shaw came out, did really well at the box office. Vin congratulated Dwayne. Dwayne and kind of recorded a video thanking him and all that stuff. Then he ended it with, "See you soon, Toretto."
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Yeah, please.
Derek Lawrence: I mean, the perfect callback to Fast Five and also just really gets us excited for the future. So hopefully, whether it's 10 or 11, we'll have those two titans back facing off and not even facing off just being pals in the movie. So hopefully, we'll end up there.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: Yeah. I also have a question. I mean, we know now in F9 that there is a Toretto that Hobbs has presumably not met. I need to know what the reaction is from all of that.
Derek Lawrence: [inaudible 01:09:53] I mean, seen in The Rock, I mean, not only did they both come from the WWE, like they've faced off multiple times on the big stage of WrestleMania. Those are two guys that are very closely connected in that way. So just makes perfect sense to then see all three of those guys together. Fingers crossed on that.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: He's so good.
Derek Lawrence: Yeah. Lastly, as we always do, we wrap up with a winning's winnings. So who was the ultimate winner of The Fate of the Furious? What do you think, Chanelle?
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: I think it kind of goes two ways in two different contexts. So I have to say, pretty obviously, we talked about the chemistry and the humor between Statham and The Rock's character. So them, because we also know it's spawned Hobbs and Shaw this spinoff a lot of potential for those two characters. So clear winners there. But also I think within the movie, for me, it's Dom. Like he courses the focus of the beginning of the franchise, but I feel like, especially in the middle, there's so much character work done around other people that Fate becomes the movie that it's like sort of honing in on Dom Toretto as a person who he is now, what he really values, testing his faith in a lot of ways. So by the end of it, when he does have that triumphant return, it's like, "Okay. It feels earned still," which is, I think fascinating for them to be able to pull off when he spends so solid the franchise to have this moment at all, where there's a little bit of shaking, but then bringing it back in a way that feels really earned it is great.
Derek Lawrence: Yeah. It's interesting. It's almost like this is the closest we've gotten to a Dom vehicle pun unintended and kind of a Dom-centric Movie, he's off on his own journey. Most of his stuff is with different people and not the usual family. Then at the same time, we have Statham, The Rock. We're almost doing like a backdoor pilot, at the same time. And obviously, they found that to be successful. That's why they went off and did Hobbs and Shaw after this, which I should say I had interviewed both The Rock and Statham for Hobbs and Shaw. And it seemed like they really like... The rock there had always been talk of doing a Hobbs movie. He said all the way going back to five, but he's like on eight, he's like, "This is when they found that chemistry with Statham." And he's like, "This all right. This is what it is if we're going to do something."
So clearly, maybe Statham's the biggest winner because he gets... If they were already talking about doing a Hobbs' spinoff and then he gets kind of right in that titular mix there, you can't say he'd lost. I think you're dead-on, it's like off-screen, it's a Statham and The Rock, and then onscreen it's Dom in the movie, just because like you said, it's Dominic Toretto just went rogue. That's the pitch of the movie. When they walked in to be like, "All right. What's Fast 8?" That's the line they did. They're like, "Dominic Toretto just went rogue." End of pitch. And clearly, that was accepted.
I think those got to be the two different, or I guess three different winners. We've may have three winners, three people earned our respect, and just worked out perfectly.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: It's a packed movie. It deserves it.
Derek Lawrence: Yeah, absolutely. Well, it was packed. That's we went deep on this one, but that's all the time we have today. Thanks again to Natalie Emmanuel for joining us, and Brian O'Connor, we hope we earned your respect. And then you keep listening to EW's binge of the Fast Saga when next week we're joined by John Cena. Yes. Jakob Toretto himself for a spoiler-free preview of F9. All right. So just a little run down. We'll have our scene episode previewing F9 coming out on the 25th, which is when F9 is finally thankfully released into the world. But don't worry a few days after the release of F9, we'll be back with multiple members of the family for a spoiler field deep dive. We got a lot more binge and F9 content coming your way. So stay strapped in, we're almost to the finish line. In the meantime, please subscribe and listen along every week, wherever you get your podcasts, rate us, tell us what you think. Share it with your friends and family.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: You can find us on Twitter @derekjlawrence or me @chanelleberlin.
Derek Lawrence: Also, head to ew.com for complete coverage of the Fast Saga and full episode transcripts.
Chanelle Berlin Johnson: This episode was hosted and produced by Derek Lawrence and Chanelle Berlin Johnson. Produced, edited, and mixed by Samee Junio, and executive produced by Carly Usdin and Shana Naomi Krochmal.
Derek Lawrence: Thanks for listening, and until next time, [foreign language 01:14:20] podcast, familia.
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