2021 Cannes Film Festival Selection Includes ‘Fast and Furious 9’

The 74th annual Cannes Film Festival is almost upon us and the slate of films varying from all sorts of genres includes the 9th edition of the “Fast & Furious” series, the supposed planetary blockbuster that will premiere at Cannes for a special screening. The anticipated adrenaline junkie thriller is set to be centered on Dom Toretto and his struggle to confront his sins of the past to save the ones he loves. The film festival’s chief Thierry Fremaux had promised that a major summer blockbuster would be in the lineup this year and it wasn’t the movie most audiences were initially expecting. 

Ever since the Festival’s chief, Fremaux, told Hollywood reporters that a “planetary blockbuster” would premiere in the 2021 edition, audiences speculated and rumors circulated. Many people expected Fremaux to announce the title of the film during the press conference on June 3, where he unveiled the entire selection of films by the committee; unfortunately, it wasn’t the next upcoming James Bond film “No Time To Die,” nor “Dune” or “West Side Story.” 

Universal Pictures

Starring Vin Diesel, John Cena, and Michelle Rodriguez, the highly anticipated action thriller is already a major international box office milestone, having grossed over $250 million worldwide, including $203 million in China (as of June 6). The movie itself should gain  more traction through its French premiere as part of a beachfront public screening during the Cannes Film Festival, where Cannes locals and holidaymakers will be in attendance. The cast, while not expected to be in the audience, is excited for the film to be screened at such a historic event. 

After being cancelled last year due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Cannes Film Festival will take place next month, from July 6 through 17. The official lineup was revealed last week, but one movie was left off, which was “F9.” Though an adrenaline-pumping blockbuster like “F9” might not be expected film festival fare, there have been more than a few major movies in the past that have made debuts on the festival circuit. For example, later this year, “Dune,” the most highly anticipated sci-fi thriller of the year, will screen at the Venice Film Festival later this year. “F9’s” French screening at Cannes further cements the idea that this franchise installment is a major cinematic event and  helps reignite audience excitement in the big screen exhibition experience. Other highly-anticipated movies premiering at Cannes include “Stillwater” with Matt Damon and Wes Anderson’s “The French Dispatch.”

 “F9” is one of the few summer blockbusters set to debut in the coming weeks without a dual streaming release. While it may seem old school for such a big franchise such as “Fast & Furious” to not be available for streaming, stars of the film Diesel and Cena have touted the movie as perfect and the films’s reviews have supported their claims. After a long year and a half pandemic with few big screen spectacles, “F9” signals a major return to normalcy for the entertainment industry and it is doing so on a massive scale. 

‘F9’ is set for a theatrical release in the U.S. on June 25.

By Jimmy Meyer

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