On Nov. 30 2013 the world lost an amazing actor and a wonderful person. Known for his kindness, good looks, on-screen talent and unwavering optimism, Paul Walker is still dearly missed, particularly by his The Fast And The Furious co-stars. At an L.A. premiere of Furious 7 (which is released on DVD this Tuesday), Vin Diesel talked passionately about the friendships behind the camera, saying: “When the tragedy happened, I lost my best friend, I lost my brother.” In a touching tribute to his late friend, Vin named his third child Pauline, as “a way to keep [Paul’s] memory a part of [Vin’s] family."
Family was hugely important to the late actor, who famously said: “You know, all that really matters is that the people you love are happy and healthy. Everything else is just sprinkles on the sundae .” His teenage daughter, Meadow, has shared a number of touching tributes on social media since his death and his brothers, Caleb and Cody Walker, stepped in to finish the final scenes of Furious 7, which was in production at the time of Paul’s death.
It is his role in The Fast And The Furious films that made Paul Walker a household name, but playing the ex-cop turned criminal street racer Brian O’Conner was not the only part the actor brought his talent to. Today, on what would have been Paul’s 42 nd birthday, we take a look back at some of the best characters her brought to life on big and small screens around the world.
Movie:The Fast And The Furious series
Character: Brian O’Conner
When the first film hit theatres in 2001, Brian was a devoted undercover cop with a passion for fast cars and cracking cases, but when he infiltrates the inner circle of mechanic and street racer Dom (Vin Diesel), he finds himself besotted with his younger sister Mia (Jordana Brewster) and seduced by Dom’s brotherly affection. Ditching his morals for his newfound family, Brian finds himself running from the very people he used to work for as each chapter in this film series becomes more intense than the last.
Character: Lewis Thomas
After Lewis finds himself on an unexpected road trip with his brother Fuller (Steve Zahn), the pair buy a truck radio and trick a trucker into meeting up with the fictional hottie named ‘Candy’ at a motel. Taking the room next to Candy’s, the brothers hear the room's actual occupant get brutally murdered and soon realize they’ve put targets on their backs.
Character: John Rahway
In this action-packed film, Paul plays a bank robber with a loyal crew known for their spectacular heists. When that loyalty begins to waver, however, the heists start to go awry, leaving riled-up enemies and numerous casualties in their wake.
Movie:She’s All That
Character: Dean Sampson
As an arrogant jock and sidekick to Freddie Prinze Jr. in this '90s teen flick, Paul plays someone far less endearing than himself. After betting Zack (Freddie Prinze Jr.) that he can’t transform Laney (Rachael Leigh Cook) from dork to Prom Queen before prom night, he has to admit he’s impressed with Zack’s work, and ends up trying to trick Laney into sleeping with him on prom night.
Based on the book by Michael Crichton, this movie sees a group of archaeological students, Paul included, struggle to survive in 14 th century France after they travel through time to save their professor.
Movie: The Lazarus Project
Character: Ben Garvey
When his brother sucks him into a “quick” moneymaking scheme, Ben finds himself on death row. Miraculously, however, he seemingly survives the needle, waking up in a rural psychiatric hospital with haunting images constantly clouding his mind.
Character: Caleb Mandrake
As a boxing prodigy in the midst of his university career, Caleb becomes entangled with a dangerous fraternity that has no problem killing off people who get in their way, and is strangely chaired by his father, who he is intensely afraid of.
Character: Nolan Hayes
After his wife goes into labour just before Hurricane Katrina hits, Nolan finds his life spiraling out of control at a rapid rate. His newborn daughter is on a ventilator fighting for her life as power outages and rising water leave her survival in the hands of her father.
Character: Joey Gazelle
A low-level mafia employee gets his chance to make a big name for himself after a drug deal goes wrong and two police officers end up dead. Tasked with disposing of the gun behind the deed, Joey finds himself on a risky mission that requires a savvy combo of street smarts and intellect to ensure he makes it out alive.
Movie: Into The Blue
During a deep sea dive, a group of friends discover a valuable shipwreck and a cargo of cocaine. While deciding what to do with their loot they’re shocked to find themselves on the hit list of some dangerous drug lords.