‘Fast and Furious’ Actors Wanted to Recruit Phoebe Waller-Bridge for ‘F9’ Before Bond Got Her First

Jordana Brewster thinks the "Fleabag" creator's "ironic humor would add a lot" to the "Fast" franchise.
Phoebe Waller-Bridge, "F9"
Phoebe Waller-Bridge, "F9"
Everett Collection

Phoebe Waller-Bridge punched up the script for the upcoming James Bond tentpole “No Time to Die,” and she would’ve done the same for “F9” had franchise stars Michelle Rodriguez and Jordana Brewster gotten their way. The two longtime “Fast” actresses were talking about recruiting the “Fleabag” Emmy winner and bringing her humor into the franchise when the idea got nixed because of Waller-Bridge’s jump to Bond. Brewster told The Hollywood Reporter that Waller-Bridge’s humor would be a great addition to the “Fast” movies.”

“I would see Phoebe Waller-Bridge to join,” Brewster said when asked her dream addition to the franchise. “It’s funny, because Michelle and I were talking about her right before she started writing for Bond. We were like, ‘She would be so awesome.’ And then we were like, ‘Damnit! They snagged her.’ I think she would be great, because Tej (Ludacris) and Roman (Tyrese Gibson) bring so much humor. Which I think you need. There’s so much intensity within the film and so many times you watch these six-minute action sequences and you are just like dying. And then Roman and Tej will lighten it up. I feel like Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s British, ironic humor would add a lot.”

Frequent Bond screenwriters Neal Purvis and Robert Wade wrote the original “No Time to Die” script, before director Cary Fukunaga punched it up after boarding the project. Several screenwriters helped polish the script, including Scott Z. Burns. Waller-Bridge was brought on because, as Daniel Craig said in a 2019 interview, “she’s a fucking great writer and one of the best English writers around.” Waller-Bridge told Deadline in May 2019 that her goal with the “No Time to Die” script was to update how the 007 films treat female characters.

“There’s been a lot of talk about whether or not [the Bond franchise] is relevant now because of who he is and the way he treats women,” Waller-Bridge said. “I think that’s bollocks. I think he’s absolutely relevant now. It has just got to grow. It has just got to evolve, and the important thing is that the film treats the women properly. He doesn’t have to. He needs to be true to this character.”

In her interview with THR, Brewster also spoke about the long-gestating “Fast” spinoff that could being together all of the franchise’s female characters. “We could have Eva Mendes in it. Helen Mirren could be in it. Charlize Theron could be in it,” the actress said. “There are so many ways we could go…I think it would be really fun. There is also the opportunity to downsize it and go back to our roots with 1, where there is a little less green screen and we don’t have to visit as many cool locations, so maybe it’s less of a risk for the studio and we can just make something awesome and run with it. I think it’d be a lot of fun.”

“F9” is now playing in theaters nationwide.

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