By Charlie Schmidlin | The Playlist July 15, 2013 at 4:02PM
When the news broke that director Justin Lin would be departing the “Fast and Furious” franchise, which he transformed from modest Universal hit into one of the studio's go-to tentpoles, the choice of James Wan as a replacement was quite a surprising one. Adept in low-budget horror with similarly massive returns, the “Insidious” director's work doesn't initially scream “high-octane exotic bombast” but a few recent comments from Wan tell how the series will fit his overall vision.
On break from mounting “Fast and Furious 7” in Atlanta, Wan sat down with us in Los Angeles to chat “Insidious: Chapter Two,” the sequel to his and writer/actor Leigh Whannell's 2010 sleeper hit. During the discussion, Wan -- always a fan of nesting genre tropes inside others -- briefly touched on what elements he was set to bring for the latest racing franchise installment.
“I really like the theme of this next one that we're going with. I can't really talk about it, but I like the theme; it's one that I really relate to,” Wan said. “Then there's the drive of Number Seven, which was set up at the end of Number Six, which is a classic revenge story. I'm a big [genre] fan, so that's how I'm approaching it: I'm looking at it like a gritty, '70s revenge thriller, but one that still fits into the 'Fast and Furious' series."
Of course, a look back at Wan's 2007 Kevin Bacon starrer, “Death Sentence,” will prove his love for the genre; he previously mentioned “The French Connection” and “Death Wish” as inspirations. Look for inspirations to come in Vin Diesel and Paul Walker's latest jaunt across the world (LA, Tokyo, and the Middle East confirmed thus far), and stay tuned for more of our chat with Wan.