Hollywood action star Vin Diesel opens up about fatherhood

IMAGE Jocelyn Dimaculangan

Vin Diesel explains that a busy work schedule and the necessity to get deeply involved with his movie characters are the main reasons why he decided not to start a family at a young age.

Vin Diesel might be a tough action star onscreen but he definitely has a soft spot for his kids.

The Hollywood actor recently met with the Asian press at the Fairmont Hotel in Makati City last May 16 to talk about his new movie Fast and Furious 6.

(READ: PEP’s review of Fast and Furious 6)

Given his hectic schedule, the actor, who plays bad-ass driver Dominic Toretto in the movie, admits that he had to sacrifice a lot for his career.

“I waited a long time [to become a father] because this industry is so demanding.

"If you want to be the biggest star in the world, you have to be very selfish at times. Sometimes, you have to be a little late at starting a family.

“With all the traveling and living abroad, it took me a while [to start a family]. But it is definitely the most powerful transition in my life.”

He and his girlfriend Paloma Jimenez had their daughter in 2008.

The 45-year-old actor says about his daughter Hania Riley: “My daughter is my queen. My daughter is everything to me.

"I’m on a talk show with Jonathan Ross, and if I don’t send her a video to say where I am, then I’ll get in trouble.

“Becoming a father was a very powerful transition.”

He noted that several milestones of his life, involving the birth of the children in his family, has coincided with past installments of his blockbuster franchise.

“My daughter was born while we were shooting Fast & Furious 4, my son was born while we were shooting Fast & Furious 5, and then my niece came while we were doing Fast & Furious 6.”


Vin also pointed out that director Justin Lin had his son “after he saw that I could actually be a father. He had a son right after my daughter was born.”

At that point during the press conference, his co-star Michelle Rodriguez, who was seated beside him, quipped that “there’s a baby boom going on,” eliciting chuckles from the crowd.

Vin Diesel continued: “The theme of the saga is so strong about family that it does seep into your real life. It does affect your real life.

“It’s beautiful to see the kids of the next generation playing together. Tyrese Gibson [their Fast and Furious co-star] would sometimes have his kids on the set or Justin would bring his kids on the set.”

EMPHASIS ON FAMILY. Looking back, Vin recalls that this franchise has been described as “the most progressive force in Hollywood.”

He pointed out: “We are doing something beyond action. There is something being promoted that is beyond the spectacle of incredible action sequences, and that’s heart and family.

“We are making a statement that we can do a huge blockbuster and not sacrifice heart and family.

“It’s truly the first multicultural franchise of its kind.

“I give Universal a lot of credit for even trying to do that because that’s not how it’s normally done in Hollywood.”

Vin also admitted that he would want to do more movies but he often lacks the time.

“It’s hard for me to do too many [movies] because I really lose myself."


He shared a quote that he believes sums up the time-consuming nature of his work as an international celebrity.

“Renée Zellweger once said this occupation does not enhance your life, it replaces it. I always thought there was so much truth to that.

"If you get into a character too deep, you are putting a hole in your life as you live out the character’s life.”





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