Vin Diesel Shares Fast & Furious 9 Set Photo, Hints at Brian's Return

Production on Fast & Furious 9 is underway and star Vin Diesel has been keeping fans excited with various behind-the-scenes moments he shares on Instagram. One recent share featuring the late Paul Walker's brother, Cody, has fans wondering if the upcoming film will see Walker's Brian O'Conner return.

In the photo, which is shot from behind, you can see Diesel standing with a man whose posture and physical bearing are remarkably like that of Walker's. On first glance, that wouldn't be that big of a thing. Diesel and Walker were very close friends and Diesel has posted older photos of himself with Walker before. What sets this one apart, though, is the caption.

"There is something special that happens every time Cody comes to visit production..." Diesel wrote. "Always making Pablo proud! All love, always. #Fast9020 #Fatherhood #FastFamily"

You see, when Walker died in November 2013, he hadn't yet finished filming Furious 7. His brothers, Caleb and Cody Walker, stepped in to help finish things up, standing in for their brother. With their help as well as a bit of CGI, the movie was able to give Walker's character, Brian, a bit of closure. Now, with Jordana Brewster returning to the franchise for Fast & Furious 9 in the role of Mia -- who just so happens to be Brian's wife -- it's possible that Cody could be standing in for his brother again, even if only to give a small nod to the character.

Fast & Furious 9 is written by Daniel Casey, who steps in for series writer Chris Morgan after he took on Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw. In a previous interview, Morgan indicated that he and Diesel were still talking about how they wanted to close out the franchise with a final trilogy.

“Vin and I have talked about this one for a while, because the intent is to do 8, 9, and 10 and to make it a trilogy,” Morgan told Slash Film. “So how do they all connect, what are we moving toward, what’s that final end point? We’ve been playing around with that stuff, and the studio has announced dates on it, but in terms of the script actually being written right now, we’re not at that stage yet.”

Since then, both John Cena, Francis Ngannou, and Michael Rooker have been added to the film's cast, while producer Hiram Garcia indicated at the premiere of Hobbs & Shaw that franchise cold go beyond 9 and 10 yet.

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"This isn't about a separate world, this is a world that feeds into the Fast & Furious," Garcia pointed out. "We just did it out of order. Whereas the Avengers and Marvel universe, they started with their spinoffs and they got to Avengers, we started with our Avengers in Fast & Furious and now we're starting to spin it off. But it's to help support the Fast & Furious universe because obviously we have plans for 9 and 10, but who doesn't want an 11, 12, and 13, so forth?"

Fast & Furious 9 is set to land in theaters on May 22, 2020.