Justin Lin Bails on Fast and Furious 7

Justin Lin, Vin Diesel, Paul Walker and Elsa Pataky on the set of Fast Five (2011) Movie Image

I guess the road really ends here for Justin Lin.

Universal wants a “Fast and Furious 7” by next Summer, but director Justin Lin isn’t feeling that timetable, so THR reports that Lin has bailed on the 7th installment, which would have been his fifth in the franchise, having started with “Tokyo Drift” and continuing through “Fast & Furious” and “Fast Five”, and the upcoming “Fast and Furious 6”.

Fast and Furious 6 (2013) Movie PosterParts 6 and 7 in the car racing franchise turned heist series were supposed to shoot back to back, but that plan was apparently scrapped very early on after news of it leaked. If recent PLOT SPOILERS are to be believed, “Fast and Furious 6” would have led directly into “Fast and Furious 7” and tie the franchise up with its odd duck, “Tokyo Drift”, which saw a major character die … only to return in “Fast Five” and now, “Fast and Furious 6”.

The good news for fans of the franchise is that Lin didn’t leave because of problems with the studio or star Vin Diesel, but simply because he didn’t feel he could do “Fast and Furious 7” justice in the time that Universal needed the film out. This isn’t a new thing. Just recently, Rupert Wyatt bailed from the sequel to “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” for the same reason. Likewise with Gary Ross and the “Hunger Games” sequel.

The studio is now said to be looking for a replacement director, since they need “Fast and Furious 7” up and running very soon if they’re going to meet their own 2014 Summer deadline.

Now that he’s off “Fast and Furious 7”, you have to wonder where Lin will be focusing his time. He’s been attached to a bunch of projects, including “Terminator”, “The Highlander”, a movie about the 1992 L.A. Riots, and “Chinglish”, to name just a few. I guess we shall see.

“Fast and Furious 6” stars Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Dwayne Johnson, Jordana Brewster, Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Sung Kang, Gal Gadot, Chris “Ludacris” Bridges, Luke Evans, Elsa Pataky, Gina Carano, and is set to speed into theaters this May 24, 2013.