Vin Diesel and His Furious 7 Co-Stars Commemorate Paul Walker at the Hollywood Film Awards
Actors are expected to be able to cry on cue, but celebrities inside the jam-packed Hollywood Film Awards in Beverly Hills weren't expecting to shed a stream of emotional tears last night. Kurt Russell took to the stage to present Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriguez, and Jordana Brewster with the shared Hollywood Blockbuster Award for Furious 7 and what followed moments later was one of the celebratory evening's most unforgettable speeches.
Diesel thanked Russell for his involvement with the film and spoke about the late Paul Walker, his dear friend and former co-star from the megawatt franchise. "I remember talking to Paul about it. The fact that you were in the movie made all of us... There was this sense of validation that such a great actor wanted to come on our ensemble and be a part of it," he told Russell and the audience. "We've come a long way. We've been doing this for 15 years. Fifteen years ago, Paul, Jordana, and Michelle, and I became a family... It's hard to talk about Furious 7. It's hard to celebrate Furious 7."
As Diesel began choking up, everyone in the room couldn't help but also become sentimental. "I remember coming here and telling Amore, my angel, that I'm not going to bring up Paul when I talk about the success. But when you've had a brother like that, it's impossible not to. We made a film that made the whole world cry with us. It's impossible to receive an award and not feel emotional," he continued. "I want to thank Universal for always believing in us and in this word multiculturalism–where it doesn't matter where you're from, doesn't matter what nationality you are. If you love someone, they're family. I love you all and thank you for recognizing an angel. World's a little lonelier without him, but I know he's looking down on us and I know that he's happy and smiling because all of you acknowledged him. This is for Pablo."
We can't say we didn't reach for the Kleenex ourselves.
—With reporting by Brandi Fowler