Fast & Furious is one of the most profitable movie franchises in cinema history. The latest installment, Furious 7, just brought in an estimated $384 million worldwide gross over the weekend. Many actors would jump at the chance to be part of such a money-making project, but it turns out Ja Rule missed the opportunity to star in the successful sequels.
John Singleton, director of 2 Fast 2 Furious, revealed Ja chose not to return for the second part of the series. The “Holla Holla” rapper appeared in the original The Fast and the Furious, but after he refused $500,000 for the sequel, Ludacris was added to the cast.
Singleton told Grantland:
Ja got too big for himself. He turned it down. He turned down a half a million dollars… He got 15 grand to be in the first movie. He was really big at that time. I guess Murder Inc. was throwing out hits and were making money hand over foot. He was acting like he was too big to be in the sequel. He wouldn’t return calls. I went to the studio to go see him — that’s just my mantra, I deal with a lot of music people. He was kinda playing me to the side and I was like, “What? What is this s**t?”
The Oscar nominated director of Boyz n the Hood says Ja’s decision not to do 2 Fast changed Luda’s life. The Atlanta emcee went on to star in other films including Crash, Hustle & Flow, and several other Fast & Furious movies. Singleton did make it clear he and Ja are on good terms now.
Years later I saw Ja Rule at the Source Awards and we joked about it. I took him under my arm and said, ‘Man, when I call you, you listen. I ain’t calling you for no bulls**t.’ He said, ‘Yeah, man, I’m sorry about that.’ He apologized. I love Ja. I still think Ja has a lot of personality and can come back in a different way.