- Los Angeles residents are demonstrating against the latest installment of the movie’s franchise.
- Angelino Heights community members claim the franchise promotes illegal street racing.
- Organizers want city officials to address safety concerns and urged NBC Universal to include racing disclaimers.
Residents of a Los Angeles neighborhood are protesting filming on the latest installment of the “Fast and Furious” franchise, citing safety concerns.
Angelino Heights community members, a neighborhood located just two miles north of downtown near Dodger Stadium, took to the streets on Friday, as production was set to begin filming Saturday.
According to photos taken by Getty Images, community members and activists wielded signs with photographs of people who were killed in street racing accidents. Some residents also chanted, “street racing” kills during the protest, Deadline reports.
Residents have been vocal about the “Fast and Furious” franchise’s harmful impact on their neighborhood, the Los Angeles Times reports. “You don’t want to say it encourages the street racing, but you know, it doesn’t help,” Angelino Heights resident Rene Favela told the outlet.
Rob Cohen, who directed the franchise’s first film in 2001, told Yahoo News that the neighborhood’s geography provided the opportunity “to do fun jumps in the beginning chase with the motorcycles.”
According to the outlet, in 2015 most of the illegal activity cited near a home that has been routinely featured in the franchise consisted of car crimes, including grand theft auto and theft from a vehicle.
“The protest went better than expected. The voices of a residential community that has been tormented by the problem of street racing and screeching tires night after night for years, since the first “Fast and Furious” movie, has been heard,” executive director of SAFE Damian Kevitt said in a statement to Insider.
In a list of demands shared with Insider, the organization is calling on the city to “re-engineer the roads of Angelino Heights” with speed bumps and meridians to stop street racers in their tracks.
After Friday’s protest, organizers plan to meet with city officials to discuss preventative street racing laws in the region, according to Kevitt’s statement. These community members will be “meeting with them as a next step to hopefully bring some peace back to Angelino Heights,” Kevitt told Insider.
Kevitt told Insider that community organizers have called on NBC Universal to include safety disclaimers discouraging street racing.
—Jon Baird (@KNXBaird) August 26, 2022
“NBC Universal has still yet to comment or reply, which continues to point up the hypocrisy of their own social impact statement. We are disappointed that they have not yet shown any interest or intention to use even $1 of the estimated 6.6 billion dollars that the “Fast and Furious” franchise has earned by glorifying illegal street racing sideshows and street takeovers, to help mitigate this increasing problem,” Kevitt’s statement continued.
Representatives for NBC Universal did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.