F9: Fast & Furious 9 Releasing Earlier in China and Other Overseas Markets

Fast & Furious 9 will race into select overseas markets weeks before the Vin Diesel and John Cena-starring film reaches domestic theaters on June 25. Universal Pictures has set F9 for release in China on May 21, and will reportedly bring the Fast Saga back to theaters throughout next month, including Korea (May 19), Russia, the Middle East, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, and Vietnam. The 10-movie franchise has grossed nearly $7 billion worldwide since 2001's The Fast and the Furious and still holds the ninth highest-grossing film of all time with James Wan-directed Furious 7, which earned $390.9 million from China alone in 2015.

According to Deadline, "The China date gives the latest Justin Lin-helmed Fast entry plenty of roadway ahead of the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party on July 1 which will be marked by local celebrations and very likely a blackout on imports."

In 2017, director F. Gary Gray's The Fate of the Furious, the eighth film in the main saga, out-grossed Wan's Furious 7 to become the biggest Hollywood film ever in China. The seventh film, which was completed after the death of co-leading man Paul Walker, earned an at-the-time best 2.42 billion yuan in China in 2015. (The record is now held by Marvel's Avengers: Endgame with 4.25 billion yuan, down-shifting Fate of the Furious to second place.)

Previously set for a domestic date of May 22, 2020, F9 moved back a year to April 2, 2021, amid the burgeoning coronavirus pandemic in March 2020. In a statement, the studio said at the time the date change was because "it won't be possible for all of our fans around the world to see the film this May." The move, the studio said, "will allow our global family to experience our new chapter together."

In early October, F9 shifted again — this time to May 28, 2021 — before moving once again to its planned summer date of June 25.

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Joining franchise star and producer Diesel are franchise newcomers Cena and Cardi B; returning cast members include Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Chris "Ludacris" Bridges, Nathalie Emmanuel, Jordana Brewster, Sung Kang, Helen Mirren, Kurt Russell, and Charlize Theron.

Vin Diesel's Dom Toretto is leading a quiet life off the grid with Letty and his son, little Brian, but they know that danger always lurks just over their peaceful horizon. This time, that threat will force Dom to confront the sins of his past if he’s going to save those he loves most. His crew joins together to stop a world-shattering plot led by the most skilled assassin and high-performance driver they’ve ever encountered: a man who also happens to be Dom’s forsaken brother, Jakob (John Cena, the upcoming The Suicide Squad). F9 sees the return of Justin Lin as director, who helmed the third, fourth, fifth and sixth chapters of the series when it transformed into a global blockbuster. The action hurtles around the globe—from London to Tokyo, from Central America to Edinburgh, and from a secret bunker in Azerbaijan to the teeming streets of Tbilisi. Along the way, old friends will be resurrected, old foes will return, history will be rewritten, and the true meaning of family will be tested like never before.

Fast & Furious 9 opens in U.S. theaters on June 25.