Vin Diesel is recalling a powerful story involving his late “Fast & Furious” co-star, Paul Walker.
During an appearance on Wednesday’s episode of “The Kelly Clarkson Show,” the actor opened up about casting John Cena to play Jakob Toretto, the brother of his character Dominic, in “F9.” Diesel, 59, shared that he believes Walker sent him Cena.
“Obviously I’m multicultural. You could’ve cast anybody to be my brother,” Diesel explained to Clarkson. “For two months before I went into filming, I created a shrine where I could do all the combat training, all the stunts and I had the Charger there to simulate the garage to get into the Dom state of mind.”
“The idea of the brother worked great on paper, but when the time came to cast it, anxiety,” he admitted. “Who could you cast to be Dom’s brother and 20 years into the game? The audience knows our mythology so much.”
“And [Cena] comes into the shrine one morning,” Diesel continued. “I had this strange feeling that Paul Walker had sent him.”
“That’s magical,” Clarkson replied, to which Diesel agreed, “Very magical.”
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The “Guardians of the Galaxy” voice actor referenced an Instagram video he posted back in April 2019. In the clip, above, Diesel explained how Walker, whom he called Pablo, “sends” him people “every blue moon.”
“Guys as you know I’m always thinking fast and thinking about the responsibility of making something iconic and deserving of your loyalty,” Diesel told the camera. “I know this sounds crazy but every blue moon I feel like Pablo up there sends me someone, another soldier for the fight for truth.”
“Today someone came by the Toretto gym that speaks to what Pablo would have brought me,” he continued before Cena then came into the frame and proceeded to wave and wink at the camera. “All love, always.”
Walker passed away at the age of 40 following a car accident in November 2013. Diesel is the godfather of Walker’s daughter, Meadow, 20.
In a recent interview with E!’s “Daily Pop,” Diesel shared his thoughts on Meadow possibly joining the “Fast & Furious” franchise. He appeared to tease that Meadow could possibly appear in future films and referenced “Fast 10.”
“I would not count anything out,” Diesel said, with E! noting that the star’s “careful” answer included a lot of pauses.
“Let me just — without giving you all of the secrets of ‘Fast 10.’ Let’s just say nothing’s ruled out,” he added.