Vin Diesel names baby after 'Fast & Furious' co-star Paul Walker - Emirates24|7

Vin Diesel names baby after 'Fast & Furious' co-star Paul Walker

Vin Diesel posted this picture of himself with his new daughter, Pauline, on Facebook.

Vin Diesel and his partner Paloma Jimenez have named their new daughter after Paul Walker, his co-star in The Fast and the Furious series of action films.

Diesel revealed the news in an interview on NBC's Today show in the US, adding that he felt his late friend's presence in the delivery suite earlier this month.

(Facebook: Vin Diesel)

Diesel told Natalie Morales on the US programme: "I named her Pauline. There's no other person that I was thinking about as I was cutting the umbilical cord. I knew he was there."

"It felt like, you know, a way to keep his memory a part of my family and a part of my world."

Walker was killed in a car crash in December 2013.

Diesel and his long-term partner Paloma Jimenez have two more children, Hania and Vincent.

The final film in the franchise to feature Walker, Furious 7, recently premiered at the South by South West festival.

 

'Furious 7' opening:

'Furious 7' is barreling toward a record opening weekend, with tracking services predicting that the adventure film could debut to as much as $115 million.

The Universal sequel doesn't premiere until April 3, but it seems to be benefiting from a number of factors - chief among them a lack of big-budget action films pegged at male audiences and the fact that 'Furious 7' is Paul Walker's last completed film before his 2014 death in a car crash.

"It's going to blow up really big," said Phil Contrino, VP and chief analyst with BoxOffice.com. "It's similar to what we saw from 'American Sniper' and 'Guardians of the Galaxy.' Everybody wants to talk about the film and be able to discuss the ending and how they handled the Paul Walker situation."

Walker's death has generated the lion's share of the headlines, and the film has turned into a memorial to his talent much as 'The Dark Knight' allowed fans to pay tribute to Heath Ledger.

However, the film is also benefiting from recent action whiffs such as 'Run All Night' and 'The Gunman.'

Female audiences have driven recent box office hits such as 'Cinderella' and 'Fifty Shades of Grey,' but with the exception of 'Kingsman: The Secret Service,' little has resonated with male crowds. That should change with 'Furious 7.'

If 'Furious 7' hits estimates, it will easily be the top April debut of all time, trumping 'Captain America: The Winter Soldier's' $95 million bow, and a franchise-high, outgrossing 'Fast & Furious 6's' $97.4 million opening. Eric Handler, an analyst with MKM Partners, predicts the film could do $250 million domestically by the time it ends its run.

Ticket pre-sales have been robust, with Fandango reporting that 'Furious 7' is outpacing the sixth "Fast & Furious" film at a similar point in its sales cycle, and MovieTickets.com saying the new film's reservations are three times that of its predecessor. Some movie chains, such as Cinepolis, are already close to selling out prime weekend showtimes and expect to add extra screenings to meet demand.

The volume of discussion surrounding the film is about 40% higher than it was for 'Fast & Furious 6,' Fizziology reports, and many of the comments are emotional reactions related to Walker's death. It also found that the film is tracking well with African-American and Hispanic crowds and is more appealing to women than most action films.

The diversity of the series, something reflected in the films' multicultural cast, mirrors the audience it attracts, theater owners report.

"It has an interest across a wide range of people," said Tom Stephenson, CEO of Look Cinemas. "It's appealing pretty broadly. There's a lot of built-up anticipation."

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