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Vin Diesel directed a Fast and Furious movie you’ve probably not seen

The events of the Fast and Furious movie spin-off act like a prelude to Fast and Furious 4, and also include a number of returning characters

Vin Diesel as Dom Toretto in Fast 9

The Fast and Furious franchise is known for its popular spin-offs like Hobbs and Shaw, but did you know there’s more out there? Directed by Vin Diesel, Los Bandoleros, which is Spanish for ‘The Outlaws’, was released in 2009 at the International Latin Cinema Festival.

The short action movie has a runtime of 20 minutes, and is set in the Dominican Republic. In an interview cited by Dominican Today in 2009,  Diesel praised the “multicultural” country. “Growing up in Manhattan many of the brothers which I grew up with were Dominican. There’s something very multicultural about the Dominican Republic I identify with,” he said. “75% of the Dominican population is mulatto, which means, like me, are of European and African descent.”

Like his Fast and Furious character, Vin Diesel is part Afro-American and part Italian. The events of Los Bandoleros set up the thrilling heist at the start of Fast and Furious 4, which sees Toretto hijack the fuel tanker from a truck in the Dominican Republic in order to steal its oil.

Along with Vin Diesel, who reprises his role as Dom Toretto, Michelle Rodriguez returns as Toretto’s love interest Letty Ortiz, while Sung Kang reprises his Tokyo Drift role as Han Lue. After appearing in Fast and Furious 4 earlier that year, Tego Calderón also reprises his role as escaped prison inmate Tego Leo, who helps Diesel steal the oil.

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With a box office performance of 360.4 million USD, Fast and Furious 4 proved to be more popular and successful than some industry insiders predicted. So why don’t more people know about this thriller movie spin-off?

After being screened at the International Latin Cinema Festival, Los Bandoleros was included as a bonus for the Blu-Ray and special edition DVD release for Fast and Furious 4. To find out more about the people behind these iconic characters, check out our guide to The Fast and the Furious cast.