The 47-year-old actor became noticeably emotional several times as he spoke about his close friend and co-star at a screening of the latest installment of the action franchise in California on March 16. Paul died in a car crash at the age of 40 in 2013.
He reflected: ”This was a labor of love and in some ways hardest movie I’ve 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.”
At that stage, the action star — who recently announced the arrival of his third child with long-time partner Paloma Jimenez — paused as he was overcome by emotion, but was reassured by the audience. One person shouted: ”You’ve got family here, Vin.”
Vin, speaking of his close friend, added: ”We truly made this for you.”
In an interview last year, Vin expressed regret that Paul — who he nicknamed “Pablo” — would never get to see the finished production of Furious 7.
He said: ”We all went above and beyond to make Pablo proud, but man, I wish he could see what we have created and just how far we have come.”