Film: Fast & Furious 9
Edinburgh is again be in the grip of film fever – and disruption – as a production team gets to work on the ninth instalment in the Fast & Furious franchise.
It is Universal’s biggest ever film franchise and is focused on illegal street racing and international espionage.
It will see 800 crew members in the city for what is being billed as ‘one of the largest and most complex shoots ever’ to film in Edinburgh’s historic Old and New towns.
Among the actors expected to join Vin Diesel are Charlize Theron, Helen Mirren, Michelle Rodriguez, Jordana Brewster, Tyrese Gibson and Chris ‘Ludacris’ Bridges.
While some commuters and residents complain about the disruption, the city’s film and tourism bodies point out that movie-making brings millions in revenues to the city, and 375 of the production crew are recruited locally.
Film Edinburgh and Edinburgh Council have been working with the production team for the past nine months to facilitate the access needed.
Director Justin Lin was full of praise for the city. He said: “Edinburgh is such a unique and iconic location and we are incredibly excited about the opportunity to celebrate it in the Fast and Furious saga.
“The support from all local agencies, businesses and the community has been invaluable in helping to coordinate this shoot. We appreciate the entire city’s help and are excited to have such a beautiful and historic city in the film.”
Rosie Ellison, head of Film Edinburgh, said: “Following our involvement with Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame, we could demonstrate that the city has the ability to host such a large-scale production but were nonetheless thrilled when the Fast and Furious filmmakers confirmed that Edinburgh had been chosen as a filming location for the next outing of this hugely popular franchise.
“We will continue to work closely with the production to ensure its smooth-running of the location shoot across the city.”
The production will affect 52 streets including Waterloo Place which will be closed entirely except for local access from Regent Road to Calton Hill until 12 September, and both South College Street and West College Street from 6-23 September. West Parliament Square and St Giles Street are closed between 7-11 September. Chambers Street, Cockburn Street, Guthrie Street and Victoria Street are among those also closed on various days.
The New Town is also affected with closures in George Street on 15, 17, 23 and 25 September, Melville Street on 23 and 24, and St Stephen Street in Stockbridge on 22 and 23 September.