It may have taken two decades to find out that Dominic “Dom” Toretto, Vin Diesel’s character in The Fast Saga, was actually Latine after J.D. Pardo (Mayans M.C.) played his father in the 2021 sequel F9, but when we did, it opened a whole new world of possibilities. Particularly that of Oscar winner Rita Moreno (West Side Story).
In May 2022, it was revealed that Moreno would be joining the cast to play Dom’s grandmother in the upcoming tenth installment of the franchise, Fast X. At the time, Diesel said “it’s been my dream forever to work with Rita Moreno, and the fact that she’s here playing my grandmother makes my soul smile. I am so blessed.”
Now, we’re learning just how Moreno landed the role of Abuela Toretto. In an interview with Entertainment Tonight at the premiere of her latest film 80 For Brady, Moreno tapped her grandson, Justin Fisher, to explain how the role was offered to her.
It started with Fisher and Diesel going out for drinks after an event in 2021 for Steven Spielberg’s West Side Story, which Moreno starred in.
“[Vin is] so fond of my grandma,” Fisher said. “I told him, ‘You should work with her. You should have her be your grandma, have her slap you upside the head. Have her have a little tone, because you know her, it’s all tone.’”
Turns out Diesel loved the idea and – presto – Moreno will now deliver some grandmotherly wisdom and love to The Fast Saga family. We’re not sure if she’ll get behind the wheel of a blazing sports car in the sequel, but we are looking forward to that slap she is going to give Diesel upside his head if he doesn’t listen to his abuela.
And with this Fast X official poster dropping, we hope Rita Moreno makes it out alive too. Because “the end of the road begins” feels extra ominous for one of our wildest franchises.
Fast X hits theaters on May 19, 2023.