Fast and Furious 7, the delayed next instalment of the car-racing series that starred the late Paul Walker, will be released in 2015, co-star Vin Diesel has revealed via social media.
On Sunday, Diesel announced on his Facebook page that the upcoming film will hit theatres on April 10, 2015.
"P.S. He'd want you to know first," the actor added, in reference to his co-star Walker, who died in a fiery car wreck in late November.
Universal Studios confirmed the news on Monday. Walker will still appear in the film, though Universal has not said exactly how it will handle his unfinished performance.
The seventh film in the blockbuster action franchise was originally slated for release in July 2014, with about half the filming completed earlier this fall. Walker and Diesel were to be rejoined by familiar faces, including Jordana Brewster, Tyrese Gibson, Michelle Rodriguez and Dwayne Johnson.
The cast and crew had been on a break from filming for the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday when Walker and his friend Roger Rodas were killed. Universal temporarily shut down production after their deaths.
Speed a factor in fiery crash
On Nov. 30, Rodas's Porsche Carrera GT struck a light pole and a tree in Santa Clarita, Calif., before bursting into flames, killing both the driver and Walker, who was the passenger. Authorities said speed was a factor in the crash.
The death stunned fans of the incredibly popular Fast and Furious franchise, many of whom visited the area in the days after to pay tribute to the actor, who was 40.
Among the many memorials was a high-performance vehicle convoy on Dec. 8 that saw thousands of fans, friends, mourners and car enthusiasts gather and drive past the site where he died.
The Fast and Furious series has been one of Universal's most lucrative in recent years, grossing almost $2.4 billion US worldwide since 2001. The last film, Fast & Furious 6, made $789 million US.
Best known for his role as former cop turned street racer Brian O'Conner in the Fast and Furious movies, for which he appeared in all but one, Walker also starred in films such as Varsity Blues, Pleasantville, Into the Blue, Flags of Our Fathers and the recently opened Hurricane Katrina drama Hours.