Ludacris is aware that many moviegoers are fed up with the Fast & Furious series shortly after it released its tenth film in the main series, Fast X.
But the 45-year-old rapper-turned-action star says there’s a completely normal reason the franchise has lasted so long — money.
During an appearance on Showtime’s All The Smoke podcast, Ludacris (real name: Christopher Brian Bridges) said that the films, which include 10 in the regular series and one spinoff, have earned ‘billions’ of dollars over a 22-year span.
‘I hear people say all the time, “Why do y’all keep doing these movies?”‘ he recounted to hosts Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson.
‘That’s the dumbest f***ing question in the world, I’m gonna tell you why,’ he continued. ‘Because no matter what industry we in — podcasts, music, movies — it’s all about a bottom line. It’s about how much you spend compared to how much you make. We’re making billions of f***ing dollars,’ he said dramatically.
All about the Benjamins: Ludacris tried to shut down detractors of his massively successful Fast & Furious franchise on Showtime’s All The Smoke podcast when he explained why they keep making the films after the release of Fast X: ‘We’re making billions of f***ing dollars’
Money: He called questions about why the series has gone on so long the ‘dumbest f***ing question’ and said it was ‘all about the bottom line’; Vin Diesel and Daniela Melchior seen in Fast X
Luda added that he was just trying to be accurate and ‘not trying to brag or nothing.’
He went on to make the profit motive even clearer.
‘When some of y’all keep saying, “Why do y’all keep shooting these movies?” Let me tell you why. Because if you spend 200 million and you make a billion, who the f*** is you gonna tell to stop shooting movies when you’re making $800 million?’ he said.
The hitmaker was clearly incensed by the question, though, and he encouraged questioning viewers to ‘stop asking that Goddamn question.’
The Fast & Furious franchise hit its commercial peak with its 2015 film Furious 7, which earned $1.515 billion at the global box office, according to Box Office Mojo.
That film also got a significant boost because it was the final film to feature original star Paul Walker, as he crashed his car and died in the fiery wreck before finishing principal photography.
The film was completed using Walker’s brothers as body doubles, and his face was digitally recreated in some scenes.
The Fate Of The Furious in 2017 also surpassed the billion-dollar marker, but 2021 F9 only earned a $762 million, which was still an enormous gross, but not in the same league as the previous two films.
Can’t stop, won’t stop: Luda added that no studio would ever try to stop a franchise in which ‘you spend 200 million [dollars] and you make a billion’
Doing well: Fast X, the tenth in the main series — eleventh counting a spinoff — earned $520 million globally, putting it on track to be one of the most lucrative entries; still from Fast X
Pricy: However, Fast X has also received mixed reviews from critics, and it is considerably more expensive than its predecessors with an enormous $340 million reported budget; still from Fast X
However, that film also came out at a more dangerous part of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, so the new Fast X could surpass it.
It has currently grossed $520 million worldwide, according to Box Office Mojo, and it edged out Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3 for the number two spot at the weekend box office behind Disney’s new live-action remake of The Little Mermaid.
However, Fast X has also received mixed reviews from critics, and it is considerably more expensive than its predecessors with an enormous $340 million reported budget.
The film had the second-largest opening weekend of the year, followed behind the mega hit The Super Mario Bros. Movie.