Vin Diesel dashed straight from the hospital where he and wife Paloma Jimenez had been staying with their newborn baby on Wednesday, March 18 — because nothing was going to stop him honoring his late friend Paul Walker at the first Californian Furious 7 screening.
The action hero, who became a dad of three on Monday, March 16, was choked with emotion as he spoke about the making of the his latest movie, and told fans how usually he and Walker spent time together at the premieres of the Fast and Furious films.
"I had to come from the hospital, and I had to introduce the first screening in California where the whole franchise started," Diesel, 47, told the audience. "As you know this was a very personal and important film to us, every time when I saw the movie at the premiere, Paul Walker and I would go off to the side, and he would always tell me, 'Vin, the best one's still in the can,'" he continued.
After telling viewers to be mindful of the fact that others have to wait a little to see the film (which hits theaters on Friday, April 3), so to keep the story line quiet, the actor's mood became somber.
"This was a labor of love," he said. "It was in some ways the hardest movie that I ever had to do because the relationships that you see on film are so real, when the tragedy happened, I lost my best friend, I lost my brother."
Overwhelmed by emotion, Diesel paused. "Tonight…" he said, before struggling to compose himself.
"You've got family here Vin," one audience member shouted out, cheering the actor.
"I love that, thanks for being my family, thanks for always taking care of us, thanks for believing in us. You know what's most important in life. This is our gift to you, but more importantly, it's for my brother there," he added.
Walker died in November 2013 after a car he was riding in crashed and burst into flames in Southern California. He was 40 years old.
Watch Vin's emotional tribute on the video above.
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