A run of sequels is supposed to die a slow death, with waning interest as a series progresses. What, then, explains the $71-million opening-weekend take of Fast and Furious?
I know everybody has already forgotten the damned thing exists, but I’m still awed by that number. It’s a third sequel in a franchise nobody gets excited about, and it tops the series’ previous best start by $20 million.
Given the relatively dim star power of Vin Diesel, Paul, Walker, Michelle Rodriguez, and Jordana Brewster, it can’t be attributed to their returns. So what is it?