Paul Walker, the 40-year-old actor who was one of the faces of the "Fast and Furious" movie franchise, died Saturday in a single-car crash in Santa Clarita, California.
As reported early by TMZ, a representative of Walker's said "He was a passenger in a friend's car, in which both lost their lives." The site had a photo of a car that was completely engulfed in flames taken from Twitter.
Police were still on the scene and hadn't issued any official statements about the crash.
I'm heartbroken that Paul Walker has died. The car world has lost a great guy." -- Jonny Lieberman
Walker was reportedly at a charity event when the red Porsche in which he was a passenger slammed into a light pole and a tree before bursting into flames.
The Los Angeles Times reported that Walker had recently been working on the next installment of the "Fast" franchise, that so many car fans have come to love for its over-the-top depictions of the life of speed. The next movie was to be "Fast & Furious 7," the opening scene of which was released this week on the "Fast & Furious 6" DVD. Eerily, the opening scene was a funeral mourning one of the characters.
In May, Walker talked with Motor Trend's Michael Shaffer about "Fast & Furious 6," the series' stunts, his love for the Mitsubishi Evo and his opinion of the Subaru BRZ and Scion FR-S twins.
He said he strives for as much realism as a director will allow in the "Fast" franchise's increasingly outlandish set pieces. Saying he was a "cosmic killjoy" for those less experienced with cars. "They haven't lived with cars the way I have; they haven't spent time with cars on the track the way I have. I'm a technical consultant," he said.
When Shaffer commented that the Toyobaru twins needed about 50 more horsepower than their current 200, Walker replied: "What are you talking about? That car needs 500 more horsepower."
Reaction to Walker's death was near-universal shock and sadness. (US Weekly) Ludacris the rapper/actor and fellow "Fast" cast member, said "Your humble spirit was felt from the start, wherever you blessed your presence you always left a mark... You will forever hold a place in all of our hearts @paulwalker legacy will live on forever. R.I.P."
Motor Trend Senior Features Editor Jonny Lieberman tweeted: "I'm heartbroken that Paul Walker has died. The car world has lost a great guy."