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New Details About Justin Lin's Abrupt Fast 10 Exit Reveal Major On-Set Tensions

Since the release of "The Fast and the Furious" in 2001, the "Fast and Furious" franchise has spawned nine adrenaline-pumping films in total within the main series. Those movies elevated stars Vin Diesel and the late Paul Walker to household names and gave fans more over-the-top car-themed action than you can shake a racing flag at.

The 10th film in the series, "Fast X," originally had Justin Lin as a director. But, in late April, the filmmaker announced he was departing the project. Five of the "Fast and Furious" films, including the recent "F9," have been directed by Lin, which made his name synonymous with the franchise to nearly the same extent as Diesel's. On top of that, "Fast X" was mere days into principal photography when the director exited. News of his departure came as a massive shock that reverberated across the "Fast and Furious" fandom like a revved engine on a tricked out Dodge Charger.

As the "Fast X" production looks to find a new director and fans wonder what will become of the landmark 10th movie, which caps a decade of "Fast and Furious" films, new information about Lin's departure has finally come to light, revealing major tensions on-set in the days prior to his exit.

Studio interference and disagreements with Vin Diesel reportedly led to Lin's exit

A new, in-depth exposé from The Hollywood Reporter published in early May chronicles reports of the events leading up to filmmaker Justin Lin's departure from the upcoming "Fast X" and reveals that there were major tensions between the director, Universal Pictures, and even Vin Diesel. According to the report, Lin believed he had a finished script, but both the studio and Diesel (who is also an executive producer) disagreed.

The problems between Lin and the studio didn't stop there. A planned shooting location in Eastern Europe had to be scrapped due to the ongoing war in Ukraine. Amid that uncertainty, Universal sent a writer to London to help polish up the script, a move that Lin reportedly disliked. And, despite a flurry of casting announcements in the months and weeks leading up to the start of filming, one of the villain roles had still not been cast. 

Then, on April 23, THR states that Lin allegedly had a serious fight with Diesel during a meeting with two other crew members. During that meeting, Diesel presented new script notes which ostensibly led to a breaking point for Lin, especially considering the script was already a sore spot after a new writer was flown in from the U.S. According to an unnamed source, "Justin had finally had enough and said, 'This movie is not worth my mental health.'" Within two days, Lin had quit as director, though he remains involved as a producer.

A representative of Universal told The Hollywood Reporter, "Any creative differences leading to Justin Lin's exit were with the studio, not with fellow producers, cast or crew." However, if the reporting is accurate, this would not be the first time Diesel's style of management led to a major player exiting the "Fast and Furious" franchise. Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson formerly left the series after an ongoing feud with his co-star.

Louis Leterrier, whose previous work includes "Clash of the Titans" and "Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance," is set to replace Lin as director for "Fast X" later this week.