A report on Dec. 13 claimed that Cody Walker was in talks to fill in for his fallen brother in the latest ‘Fast & Furious’ sequel. It’s a decision that no one wants to make, but not only is Cody the best choice as a replacement — he’s the only choice.
At first, the news that Paul Walker‘s younger brother, Cody, may be filling in for him in the upcoming Fast & Furious 7 had me thinking of a sequence in Beerfest — the absurd joke where an identical twin brother replaces a dead character halfway through the movie without much fanfare — but upon further review, I’m starting to think that the makers of the movie don’t have a better option.
Should Cody Walker Fill In For His Fallen Brother?
The details of Cody possibly replacing Paul sound incredibly awkward and more than a little dark. “[Producers] soon realized they needed someone who looked like Paul to finish the movie and that’s when they approached his nearly identical brother, Cody,” a source told Mail Online. “They can shoot Cody from behind and at distance. If it’s a shot they need Paul’s face in close up, they can CGI it later on.”
Those quotes make it sound like the Fast & Furious 7 filmmakers are just going to paste Cody into the original script and hope we don’t notice the difference. Which, judging by fans’ reactions over the past 24 hours, would be absolutely crazy. But I don’t think that’s the plan.
How Cody Walker Could Replace Paul In ‘Fast & Furious 7’
Paul’s death, as tragic as it was, has left director James Wan and the Fast producers a serious problem: They don’t want to write Paul completely out of the movie and pretend like he never existed, but they also can’t give him the respectful departure he deserves because he died while in the middle of shooting key scenes. Cody, who works as a stuntman, could be a compromise.
Here’s how. Brian O’Connor, Paul’s character in the movies, will die in Fast & Furious 7 — and he will die on-screen. That’s where Cody comes in — with efficient camerawork and yes, CGI and “shooting Cody from behind,” the movie will be able to give Paul (and Brian) the epic send-off he deserves, instead of having Dom Toretto (Vin Diesel) just mention off-hand that “Brian’s dead” during one of the family barbecues.
And because Cody and Paul look so alike, a touching memorial may even be a possibility.
‘Fast & Furious 7’: The Bottom Line Is Honoring Paul Walker
Obviously this is an extremely touchy subject; in trying to honor Paul’s memory, the filmmakers could inadvertently do the exact opposite. But the same source told Mail Online that “if Cody agrees it’s because he wants to honor his brother’s memory.” We trust that Cody wouldn’t involve himself unless he was positive the movie was going to be as respectful as possible and avoid entering Beerfest territory.
I know I may be in the minority by thinking this, but again, I don’t think the people behind Fast & Furious 7 have too many options. If you can think of a better one, let me know, HollywoodLifers.
— Andrew Gruttadaro