So the actual news of this passing is known everywhere by now. Even if it hasn't fully set in with some folks. And even though it took a while for others to even accept it was true. Neither will change the fact that one of the faces of one of the biggest movie franchises is no longer with us.
This news first broke by none other than TMZ. I saw someone post about it on their Facebook status and immediately went to TMZ's site to see if it was true. I mean it just HAD to be a hoax, right? How ironic was it that the star known for dangerous car racing flicks would be killed by the very thing he flaunted in the movies? But it was true. Because TMZ reported it. And therein lied part of the initial problem.
Folks were jumping all over me saying that it was false. Mainly because of how he died. Also because none of the more respected news sources like CNN, MSNBC, etc. were reporting it. Some even went as far as to dig up a link to some site called Mediamass.com where they refuted the story as a hoax. However, as I pointed out, I have never heard of Mediamass.com. Everyone's heard of TMZ. And you can say what you want to about them, but when it comes to celebrity deaths, they always get it right. And they're always first. Even though I didn't want it to be true either.
Let's not forget that Walker had other work besides the "Fast and Furious" films. MUCH more. I had come to know him from roles in other movies that I really enjoyed. Like the star quarterback in "Varsity Blues". The naive boyfriend in "Pleasantville". Mr. Popular in "She's All That". The trust fund kid in "The Skulls". And THEN came the "Fast and Furious" movies. Those along with his other work already had me as one of his fans. And with him being only 40, he still had plenty of great opportunities ahead of him. So yeah..I was definitely hoping the stories were false. But TMZ does always get it right.
So then the latest uproar being made was about the omission of acknowledging the death of Walker's friend (and business manager) that was with him, Roger Rodas. Folks were saying his death was being ignored because he wasn't famous. I don't buy into that. His passing was unfortunate too, but should we be mentioning everyone that died on 11/30/13 just to make sure no one is left out? It's not about being disrespectful, it's just that folks had somewhat of a connection to Walker because of his work. Not so much for Rodas. Plus, I hate to be obviously (and maybe even callously) truthful, but Rodas was the one driving. So technically, he's the one that killed Walker. I'm just sayin'.
Now I'm wondering how they will address "Fast and Furious 7" that was in production when this occurred. Will they kill him off in the movie? It would seem logical given the format of the films. Albeit rather morbid as well as a little too surreal. Whatever they choose to do, I will be there opening night. I want to see what will essentially be Walker's last movie. That will be my way of paying my respects.
Rest in peace, Paul.