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Did You Know Eminem Was Supposed to Star in the First ‘Fast & Furious’ Movie?

Other actors considered for the part of Brian O'Conner included Mark Wahlberg and—get this—Christian Bale.
Eminem Music | YouTube

About 10 movies and more than 20 years in, it’s hard to imagine anyone else stepping into the shoes of Dominic Toretto, Brian O’Conner, or any of the other main Fast & Furious characters, but things reportedly could’ve looked very different.

It’s important to remember that the early ’00s were a very different time in entertainment, but according to multiple reports, rapper Eminem of all people was in the running to appear in The Fast and the Furious as undercover cop Brian O’Conner (the main role that eventually went to Paul Walker) but turned it down to work on 8 Mile. Considering 8 Mile was both semi-autobiographical and spawned what is arguably the rapper’s signature song in “Lose Yourself,” it’s probably not a decision Eminem regrets, despite the Fast & Furious franchise’s later runaway success.

Still, though. Can you imagine? Marshall freakin’ Mathers uttering the words “I like the tuna here,” and other, later gems like “Yeah, Rome, how do you like them apples?” Per CBS Sports, other actors considered for the part included Mark Wahlberg and—get this—Christian Bale.

In any case, this wouldn’t be the last time the rapper would say no to a Fast & Furious-related project. In an interview with Fuse, 50 Cent revealed that Eminem was actually approached to do the 2015 song “See You Again,” a track commissioned for the Furious 7 soundtrack as a tribute to Paul Walker after the actor’s death two years prior. He turned it down in favor of providing music for the Jake Gyllenhaal boxing movie Southpaw and “See You Again” went to Wiz Khalifa and Charlie Puth. Ironically, the Wiz Khalifa song eventually went on to tie Eminem’s own “Lose Yourself” as the second longest-running rap song to top the U.S. Billboard Hot 100, at 12 non-consecutive weeks.

Unless he makes a surprise appearance in the series’ final two planned installments as a Spider-Man-style Brian O’Conner variant after Ludacris opens up the F&F multiverse—and, at this point, I honestly wouldn’t rule it out—that one part in the “Phenomenal” music video is probably the closest we’ll ever get to an Eminem-led Fast & Furious movie. Check it out.

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