Drivers hit the gas harder after watching ‘The Fast and the Furious’
“The Fate of the Furious” was the eighth film in the franchise.Universal
More drivers were clocked excessively speeding after watching “The Fast and the Furious,” a study claims.
The number of drivers caught near movie theaters doing more than 40 mph above the limit doubled, with researchers blaming their reaction to watching the popular franchise about illegal street racing.
Experts say the research, may be a rare example of a movie changing viewers’ behavior.
Researchers studied almost 200,000 traffic tickets issued by cops in Maryland over the past five years – and matched the results with “Fast and the Furious” opening weekends.
Although ticket numbers did not rise, the speeds clocked were far higher than normal. Anupam Jena, of Harvard Medical School, said: “We can see a clear increase in the average speed. But there was not an increase in number.”
“It seems to take people already prone to driving fast and make them drive faster.”
Paul Walker, who died in a car crash in 2013, starred in the movies with Vin Diesel.
Jena wanted to study the effects of film influencing behavior.
He said: “There is a lot of discussion about how movies and other media influence behavior. But it’s hard to study.”
He said it’s difficult to assess if violent films encourage violence because most people are simply not violent and added: “Changing someone’s behavior to make them more violent is hard. It’s not hard to take someone who is already driving, and make them faster.”
But he added that he would never want films to be censored, saying: “I really like the ‘Fast and the Furious’ movies. They’re good. I just watch them from the safety of my home.”