“Furious 7” is pulling out all the stops as Universal is aiming to make one of the greatest action movies of all time and, judging by the trailers, it might just succeed. One of the ways it turned things up to 11 this time around is by including bold new faces like UFC champion Ronda Rousey.
Many may remember the 28-year-old MMA fighter as the first-ever UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion. Others may recall her film debut in the all-star 2014 flick “The Expendables 3.” Now, in her second film role, she’s squaring off against some of our favorite fast-driving criminals in “Furious 7.”
According to ScreenRant, Rousey will play Kara, a fearsome baddie who is trying to prevent our heroes from stopping whatever villainy Deckard Shaw (Jason Statham) has cooked up. As seen in the film’s trailer, fans can look forward to an intense throwdown between Kara and Letty (Michelle Rodriguez).
“I think the Ronda Rousey aspect is the game-changer,” Rodriguez says in a behind-the-scenes video breaking down their evening-gown fight scene.
Rousey was equally impressed with her female co-stars. Speaking with Entertainment Tonight, she confessed that she wasn’t expecting to work with a truckload of powerful women when she signed on for “Furious 7.”
"By the end of the day I was really impressed," she said. "I thought I was going to be working with a bunch of porcelain dolls. These were women who were so passionate about what they did, they were down to do whatever to make it look right."
While Rousey was excited to join the “Fast and Furious” family, most people know by now that she and the rest of the “Furious 7” newbies entered the franchise at a very tumultuous time. In November 2013, right in the middle of filming the soon-to-be action hit, star Paul Walker died in a tragic high-speed car accident. The late actor was honored at the film’s South by Southwest premiere.
"I was only filming while he was still with us," Rousey told ET of Walker. "The atmosphere was very cheery and family-like, and everyone was there just to help each other. He was a joy to be around, and you could tell that everybody wasn’t there for themselves; they were there for each other. I'm just lucky to have been one of the last people to witness that."
Rousey will join newcomers Statham, Kurt Russell, Nathalie Emmanuel, Tony Jaa and Djimon Hounsou when the “Fast and Furious” gang drives back into theaters on April 3. Current early projections say the film will gross between $110 and $115 million during its opening weekend, shattering the previous movie, which broke a series record at $97 million.