‘Fast & Furious’ Fans Say the Franchise Has Yet to Top the Original Movie
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The “Fast & Furious” movies have grossed more than $6 billion at the global box office over the course of 10 films, across 22 years. But ahead of the series’ 11th film on Friday, “Fast X,” fans say the over-the-top action franchise has yet to top the heights of its very first installment from 2001.
“The Fast and the Furious” received the highest net favorability rating among self-identified fans of the lucrative film franchise, according to a Morning Consult survey conducted prior to the U.S. release of “Fast X.” “F9,” the franchise’s most recent installment, which received mixed reviews from critics, finished in last place. (Net favorability rating is the share of respondents with a favorable opinion minus the share with an unfavorable opinion.)
Despite fans’ general preference for films from the Universal Pictures series’ first half, star Vin Diesel suggested there’s still a lot more to come: “Fast X” might be the first installment of a three-part finale, while there could also be more spinoffs, like 2019’s “Hobbs & Shaw,” which ranked second to last in the survey.
That could be a risky proposition, given that the youngest adult generation, Gen Z, isn’t as loyal to the franchise as some of their older counterparts. The Morning Consult survey found that only 12% of the franchise’s fans are Gen Zers, while 42% are millennials and 27% are Gen Xers. The share of fans who are Gen Zers is even smaller than that of baby boomers, who make up 19% of the fan base.
Fans Still Love the Original 'Fast & Furious' Most
Recent ‘Fast & Furious’ films aren’t as beloved
- Fans ranked the original “The Fast and the Furious” as their favorite film of the franchise with a net favorability rating of 86. “2 Fast 2 Furious” (2003), “Fast & Furious” (2009), “Fast Five” (2011) and “Fast & Furious 6” (2013) rounded out the top five.
- “The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift” (2006) joined the two most recent films, “Hobbs & Shaw” and “F9,” in the bottom three, all with net favorability ratings below 70.
- In a separate question, the “Fast & Furious” ranked as fans’ favorite film series out of a list of several popular franchises, but among the general U.S. population, it fell below franchises like “Jurassic Park,” “James Bond,” “Despicable Me” and “Star Wars.”
The engine powering “Fast & Furious” fandom
- Millennials comprise more than two-fifths (42%) of the franchise’s fandom, followed by more than a quarter of Gen Xers (27%) and almost 1 in 5 baby boomers (19%). Gen Z adults, who prefer franchises like “Despicable Me,” are the generation least likely to identify as fans of the franchise, at 12%.
- The fandom leans white (56%) and Democratic (45%). The gender profile of fans is about evenly split: Men (53%) are only slightly more likely to be fans of the franchise than women (47%).
- Half of fans reported a household income under $50,000.
Racing to the box office
Despite fans’ saying the franchise has generally dipped in quality since first launching, the “Fast & Furious” films still make a lot of money. The last film, “F9,” earned more than $173 million at the domestic box office (and $726 million globally) during a less-than-optimal environment for theatrical exhibition due to the coronavirus pandemic. “Fast X” is projected to debut to between $65 million and $70 million in the United States and is expected to thrive in China, a historically strong market for the series.
And the fans are likely to show up. More than 4 in 5 franchise fans (83%) and more than half of U.S. adults overall (54%) said they’re interested in seeing “Fast X,” per the survey. While the “Fast & Furious” franchise may never reach the highs of its beginnings, the fans who have turned the property into a global juggernaut for Universal Pictures just can’t seem to quit it.
The May 11-14, 2023, survey was conducted among a representative sample of 2,202 U.S. adults, with an unweighted margin of error of +/-2 percentage points.