‘Fast 8’ Cast: Paul Walker’s Brothers Will Not Be Reprising Brian O’Conner, But Dwayne Johnson And Jason Statham Will Be Back

The latest rumors about the Fast 8 cast have been officially squashed. Paul Walker’s unfortunate demise may have created the need to map his face over those of his brothers Cody and Caleb in order to finish filming Furious 7, but Brian O’Conner will not be returning for Fast and Furious 8.

The ending to Furious 7 was a symbolic tribute to the late actor, and despite rumors arising from Vin Diesel’s words, NBC and Universal Studios are officially letting him go. Master Herald gave the official word yesterday as rumors started to swirl about Brian O’Conner possibly returning for yet another “one last ride.”

The rumor started in October 2015, when Vin Diesel gave fans a hint about how far Paul Walker’s influence had spread through the Fast 8 franchise.

“Paul Walker used to say that eight was guaranteed. And in some ways, when your brother guarantees something, you sometimes feel like you have to make sure it comes to pass. So if fate has it, F8 … if fate has it, then you’ll get this when you hear about it. Seven was for Paul, eight is from Paul.”

The Internet took this to mean that Cody and Caleb would be returning for the Fast 8 cast to bring Brian O’Conner back with a moderate dose of CG. The rumor was further fueled when Cody Walker’s name appeared in the listing for the film’s IMDb page. Apparently, NBC executive Ron Meyer also had his words taken the wrong way.

Similar rumors were started when voice actors known to play Superman had been temporarily added to the list for Batman: Arkham Knight. Combine this with the fact that the LexCorp building was in the game, and there was speculation that the dark knight might get some help from everybody’s favorite Kryptonian orphan.

The game was finally released and Superman never made an appearance, though it still has references to various other DC Comics properties like Queen Industries (Green Arrow) and a Zatanna magic shop. It’s still not confirmed, but some have speculated that Warner Bros. is preparing for a Justice League game from another developer.

Much like Superman in Rocksteady’s final Batman game, Paul Walker won’t be brought back by the Fast 8 cast. Fans said goodbye to Brian O’Conner at the end of Furious 7, and that was the last moviegoers will see of him in the franchise. As emotional as Vin Diesel’s Dominic Toretto gets about his extended family, he will most likely have pictures of Brian. Subtle moments are likely how the late actor will make an appearance going forward.

Other heavyweight characters will be making a return in the Fast 8 cast, though, according to Movie News Guide. Dwayne Johnson made his debut in Fast Five as a DSS agent (Hobbs) who eventually joined Dominic and the crew to take down the Shaw brothers, played by Luke Evans and Jason Statham. The latter of these actors will also be returning, but it’s unknown how big his role will be. The ending to Furious 7 made it clear it would be a while before Jason Statham’s Deckard Shaw is a threat again, so it’s likely he might just be an unwilling adviser to Hobbs.

Most of what fans know about the Fast and Furious 8 story is unclear, but previous reports claim the film will take place in New York City and Cuba. The series has come a long way from its roots as an alleged remake of Point Break, and Vin Diesel has stated that he knows where it all will end.

While the Fast and Furious franchise will continue for three more films, one thing the next film will not have is a cameo appearance by Brian O’Conner. We will know more about the Fast 8 cast and story when the film hits theaters on its release date of April 14, 2017.

[Image via Universal Studios]