EXCLUSIVE: ‘F9’ (Fast & Furious 9) Is Cannes Film Festival’s Mystery Blockbuster

EXCLUSIVE: ‘F9’ (Fast & Furious 9) Is Cannes Film Festival’s Mystery Blockbuster

“F9,” the latest installment of Universal’s action-packed “Fast & Furious” franchise, is the teased “planetary blockbuster” heading to the Cannes Film Festival, Variety has learned.

Starring Vin Diesel, John Cena, and Michelle Rodriguez, the highly anticipated movie is already a major international B.O. milestone, having grossed over $250 million worldwide, including $203 million in China (as of June 6). Slated for a local release on July 14, the movie will enjoy its French premiere as part of a beachfront public screening during the Cannes Film Festival, with delegates, Cannes locals, and holidaymakers in attendance. The cast, however, isn’t expected to attend.

Ever since Cannes chief Thierry Fremaux told Variety a “planetary blockbuster” would premiere during the 2021 edition, rumors and wild guesses have been swirling as to what film it could be. Journalists expected Fremaux to unveil the title during the June 3 press conference during which he announced the Official Selection. He told journos then that the movie wasn’t “No Time to Die,” nor “Dune” or “West Side Story,” which will open in the fall. (“Dune” is set to play at the Venice Film Festival.) “F9,” meanwhile, will open on June 25 in the U.S.

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Despite the pandemic, several big U.S. movies will have their world premieres in Official Selection at Cannes, including Wes Anderson’s star-studded “The French Dispatch” from Searchlight Pictures, and Tom McCarthy’s thriller “Stillwater” with Matt Damon from Focus Features, as well as several buzzed-about indie films, notably Sean Penn’s “Flag Day” and Sean Baker’s “Red Rocket.” There will also be Oliver Stone’s new documentary, “JFK: Through the Looking Glass,” and Todd Haynes’s documentary “The Velvet Underground.”

As previously announced, the festival will pay tribute to Jodie Foster who will receive an honorary Palme d’Or during the opening night ceremony, ahead of the world premiere of Leos Carax’s “Annette,” with both Adam Driver and Marion Cotillard in attendance. The competition jury will be presided over by Spike Lee.

The 73rd edition of the Cannes Film Festival will take place July 6-17.

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