In an unexpected turn of events, the highly anticipated Fast and the Furious installment, Fast X, almost saw Keanu Reeves stepping into a key role. Alan Ritchson, who plays Aimes in the film, claims that fate intervened and he ended up playing the role that had been written for Keanu Reeves.
Ritchson recently revealed some interesting details about the casting process and the behind-the-scenes decisions that shaped the final lineup as fans eagerly await the release of the action-packed film.
Alan Ritchson Takes Over Keanu Reeves’ Role
Alan Ritchson, who is best known for his role on Titans, told Entertainment Weekly that he got the chance of a lifetime when he was cast as Keanu Reeves’ replacement in the film Fast X. This positive turn of events, according to Ritchson, was the result of some “luck.”
“It was just a little stroke of luck and good timing.”
Ritchson’s life was changed by a phone call he received while filming in Winnipeg’s subzero temperatures with Hilary Swank. The role that eventually went to Ritchson was originally written for Keanu Reeves.
“I was working on a movie with Hilary Swank up in Winnipeg in the freezing cold, and I got a call that things had shifted in the plans with Keanu Reeves, which is I think who was originally intended to play my part. Tough act to follow.”
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Since his performances have touched people worldwide, Reeves’ involvement in any project is eagerly awaited. Nonetheless, Ritchson jumped at the chance, excited to give the character his own spin.
Despite Ritchson’s ultimate success, there was a brief period of uncertainty after the departure of director Justin Lin from the Fast X project. When a director leaves midway through production, it can throw everything off and force major adjustments.
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Jeff Kirschenbaum, the franchise’s producer, called Ritchson and sounded visibly dejected, as recounted by Ritchson. The actor was expecting Kirschenbaum’s words to disappoint him and was preparing himself for this possibility.
“I got another call while I was filming from Jeff Kirschenbaum, who produces Fast, and he sounded real low. I was like, ‘Oh, God. Whatever you’ve got to say, just say it. I can take it. I’m a big boy.’ He goes, ‘You’re not going to be working with [director] Justin [Lin] on this.’ I was like, ‘Okay … am I still in the movie?’”
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The way Kirschenbaum was speaking made him even more anxious. While Ritchson was disappointed that his work with Justin Lin had come to an end, he was relieved when Kirschenbaum assured him that his position in Fast X would not be affected.
This wasn’t the first time Fast and the Furious producers had considered casting Keanu Reeves in a role. The producers obviously saw potential in Reeves’ talent and star power, even if they aren’t disclosing the specifics of his prior involvement.
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Fans have wondered if the beloved actor will ever join the high-octane world of Fast and the Furious, despite his absence from the series to this point. Although Keanu Reeves did not join the cast this time around, speculation about him doing so was inevitable given his enduring popularity. Will he join the Fast cast in their next and last movie? Only time will tell.