Michelle Rodriguez in Fast and Furious 9

Back in 2017, Fast and Furious franchise star Michelle Rodriguez worried fans with talk of potentially not returning for Fast and Furious 9 unless producers chose to “show some love to the women of the franchise on the next one.” Apparently she stuck to her word, because Michelle Rodriguez is returning for the forthcoming sequel, but she didn’t sign her deal until a female screenwriter was brought on board to help give the female characters a little more depth. Find out more about the details behind Michelle Rodriguez in Fast and Furious 9 below.

Michelle Rodriguez has played the street tough racing woman Letty since the original The Fast and the Furious in 2001. She didn’t appear in 2 Fast 2 Furious or The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift, but she returned for the fourth installment, simply titled Fast and Furious. But then her character was killed off, believed to be gone in Fast Five, but a credits scene teased her return for Fast and Furious 6, and she’s back in business ever since then.

However, Letty has always mostly been used to define the character arc of Dominic Toretto’s character arc rather than having any meaningful purpose on her own. Clearly Michelle Rodriguez was a little tired of that, and she wanted to bring in a female voice to help define the character and all the other female characters in the franchise. Rodriguez told Bloomberg recently:

“I felt like there was not enough of a female voice in the franchise. You should evolve with the times, not just pander to certain demographics that are stuck [in the past].”

She confirmed that she would be back for Fast and Furious 9 after holding out until a female screenwriter was brought on for the sequel. That means Universal has hired a female writer for this franchise for the first time ever, but as of now, no name has been announced clarifying who that writer might be. More than likely the studio’s focus is on the release of Hobbs and Shaw this summer, not to mention settling the legal debacle with franchise producer Neal Moritz, who has been kicked out of the franchise.

Kudos to Michelle Rodriguez for sticking to her guns and getting more proper female representation in these adrenaline-fueled action movies that are geared towards men. These women should be more than eye candy and tools for male character arcs. Sure, they get their own cool action moments every now and then, but you also need to care about these characters at the end of the day. We certainly look forward to seeing how this helps the franchise.

As of now, Fast and Furious 9 is slated to hit theaters on May 22, 2020.

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