Updated 03:12 AM EST, Tue, Nov 30, 2021

'Fast & Furious 8' to Take Place in Cuba?: Island Now a Prime Spot for Hollywood Movies

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"The Fast and the Furious" franchise is going to take their films to where no film has ever gone before. Well, at least not any Hollywood film in the last 50 years, anyway.

According to CTV News, the restoration of US-Cuba relations has given Hollywood the opportunity to think of new filming locations, and it seems that the car-chasing franchise is among the first to think of filming in the South American country.

The outlet said that Universal Studios already started looking for locations for their feature. Among their choices are Havana, Cuba, alongside Russia and Iceland.

However, having a major motion picture franchise in Cuba would give the studio the advantage of appealing to the Hispanic audience. In addition, producers and directors can finally shoot their films on-location. Since the embargo that halted all US-Cuba relations over 50 years ago, the film industry has filmed scenes supposedly taking place in Cuba in other Latin American countries like Uruguay or the Dominican Republic.

In the case of "Fast and Furious," the franchise has been known to shoot in exotic locations. Some of their more memorable ones were shot in Abu Dhabi, Rio, and Japan. A spokesperson for Universal shared, "Universal Pictures is currently in the process of seeking approval from the United States and Cuban governments to explore shooting a portion of the next installment of the 'Fast & Furious' series in Cuba."

Universal won't be the first studio to shoot on location, though. Since the embargo was lifted, Variety noted that Conan O'Brien already shot episodes of his show in Havana, while producers from Showtime's "House of Lies" also plan to film parts of the next season in the South American country. In 2014, Bob Yari, an American director, was able to shoot his Ernest Hemingway biopic in the country, but not until after he went through a grueling process to gather all necessary authorization.

John Kavilich, the US-Cuba Trade and Economic Council policy adviser, said about the possibility of expanding Hollywood productions in-location filming, "Cuba is a land that many know about, but few have seen. These productions are hoping to capitalize on the increased interest in Cuba."

While this is a good step in the film industry, opening Cuba to Hollywood has bigger impact than just movies. As CTV News noted, this will also boost the country's economy, considering that other movie-making hot spots like Toronto, Hawaii, and Eastern Europe have all been boosted by tax incentives for the studios.

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