The ninth film in the franchise was finally released last week after Universal delayed it by a year – a decision that has paid off; the film has became the highest-grossing release since the pandemic.
Fast and Furious 9 broke the previous record held by John Krasinski’s A Quiet Place Part II, which amassed domestic takings of $48.3m (£34.6m) compared with F9’s $70m (£50m).
Diesel, speaking from the Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project (CTAOP), told Variety: “I think what feels best is just the idea that people are returning to the theatrical experience. It feels good to say, ‘Cinema is back!’”
The actor, who has played Dom Toretto since 2001’s The Fast and the Furious, praised Universal for pushing forward with a cinema release as opposed to putting it on a subscription service.
“You can’t fault another studio for wanting to stream a movie, but the ones like Universal are bold enough to say, ‘Hey, we’re going to support the theatrical release’. I take my hat off to them,” he said.
Theron, who returns in the new film as the villain Cypher, said of the box office takings: “It’s amazing. Just thinking about the fact that they’re on their ninth movie, that’s pretty impressive.
“It’s a perfect movie to help us come back,” she added.
Fast and Furious 9 is in cinemas now.