TODAY

TODAY   |  December 03, 2013

Film studio scrambles after Paul Walker’s death

As the investigation into the accident that killed the “Fast and the Furious” star continues, the film franchise, whose seventh installment was in progress when Walker died, is in an uncertain position. NBC’s Joe Fryer reports.

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>> well, there is new video this morning showing that fiery crash that killed actor paul walker as investigators work to piece together a cause. nbc's joe fryer has the latest. joe , good morning.

>> reporter: good morning, law enforcement source tells nbc news that according to the preliminary investigation drag racing does not appear to be a factor in the crash. so an investigation into what caused the crash continues as walker's costar vin diesel makes a surprise appearance right here at the scene.

>> reporter: new security camera video shows the moment of impact in the crash that killed paul walker and his friend. that spot was cleared last night and draped with a tent to make room for a private memorial for those that knew walker best.

>> thank you for coming down here and showing that angel up in heaven how much you appreciated him. thank you.

>> reporter: earlier his father opened up about the loss.

>> when you look at paul -- that's who he was. he couldn't hide what he was.

>> movie fans will soon see a new side of walker in the movie "hours." he plays a father trying to keep his daughter alive at hurricane katrina . some say it could have been a break out performance and for producers it presented a serious dilemma.

>> they decided to stick with their plan and the movie is going to come out later this month which is what paul wanted.

>> reporter: as for the future of the $2.4 billion fast and furious franchise, filming of the next installment was underway when walker died leaving the studio scrambling. when heath ledger died while filming, the director used other actors including johnny depp to play the role. when cory monteith died they offered a tribute but offered few details on how his character died. as for walker's fast and furious character, a car crash death might seem inappropriate.

>> it's like losing a family member. how do you honor them? you don't want to run away from this but you don't want to exploit it.

>> reporter: the fast and furious franchise is produced by nbc universal . at this point there's no word on whether the next movie will still premiere on july of 2014 which is what's scheduled right now. tamron and matt.

>> all right, joe , thank you. his fans are hurting but so see his dad there break down, knowing that he has a 15-year-old daughter as well.

>> and some might say why do we put the father on. but the father said he really wanted to talk about his son to help him try and come to terms with his death. we