Magazine article Variety

Hollywood Goes to Havana for 'Furious'

Magazine article Variety

Hollywood Goes to Havana for 'Furious'

Article excerpt

The "Fast and the Furious" franchise has never exactly been known for subtlety. Over the previous seven installments, the series has dropped cars out of planes, catapulted a bus off a cliff, strapped actresses to oil tankers, and driven cars from one Dubai skyscraper to another. But for eighth installment, "The Fate of the Furious," director F. Gary Gray tackled one of the series' steepest logistical challenges yet: mounting a full-scale, big-budget action shoot in the middle of Havana.

As the first major Hollywood shoot to take place in Cuba since the trade embargo ended, Gray had to contend with a host of unusual trials, most notably the near absence of internet while on the island. "If it's a challenge to send a simple email, you can imagine how difficult it is to bring in the entire infrastructure to support a movie this big," Gray says. "We were this close to renting a cruise ship, just because there weren't enough hotel rooms in the city."

He nonetheless insists the experience was entirely worth the hassles. …

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