Fast & Furious: Dom Toretto’s Timeline Explained
Dom Toretto’s timeline is the heart of the Fast & Furious franchise, and his adventures became grander and grander with each new movie. First introduced in 2001’s The Fast and the Furious, Dom Toretto’s tough exterior often hid a heart that cared too much, and his love for his family superseded all. Although his various criminal activities put him at the top of every most-wanted list, he only acted out of the best interest of his community and his family. Through his multitude of appearances in the franchise, Dom Toretto became one of the biggest action heroes in cinema history.
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Played by Vin Diesel, Toretto began his time in the franchise as a shady criminal and was a secondary character to Brian O’Connor in the first film. However, as the franchise progressed, Dom became the central focus of the movies and his philosophy guided the films. Many of F&F’s villains became heroes, but Dom Toretto’s transformation was the most pronounced, and it quickly became clear that he was never a villain at all. While the franchise started as a quaint movie about street racing, Dom Toretto’s lengthy timeline saw it become a full-fledged action epic that never failed to surprise the audience.
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Early Life (1976 – 1991)
Dominic Toretto was born in 1976 as the oldest child of Jack Toretto, a stock car driver, and owner of a local café and market. At some point in his youth, Dom would meet Letty Ortiz, a local girl from his neighborhood and the pair would begin a romantic relationship when they reached their teens. Dom had a younger sister named Mia and a brother named Jakob, and he formed a strong connection with his family thanks to the example shown by his father. Dom Toretto’s important backstory took a massive turn in the year 1989 with the death of his father.
While participating in a stock car race at the local track, Jack Toretto was bumped by fellow racer Kenny Linder, and he made contact with the wall at over 100 MPH, which killed him instantly. Dom was overcome with rage at Linder and proceeded to attack him with a wrench following some disparaging words about the late Jack Toretto. The assault landed Dominic in trouble with the law, and he was sentenced to prison for two years. Upon his release in 1991, Dom assumed control of his father’s businesses and exiled his brother Jakob, believing that he tampered with their father’s car which resulted in his death.
Meeting Brian O’Connor (2004)
As chronicled in the events of 2001’s The Fast and the Furious, Dominic Toretto was seen participating in one of Fast & Furious’ many street races, and he had founded a mechanic’s shop as a front for his many criminal enterprises. The years since his release from prison in 1991 had made it necessary for him to make money through illegal means, and he and his crew participated in major heists of truckloads of goods. It was then that he first encountered Brian O’Connor, who was an undercover officer investigating the thefts in L.A.
After a couple of weeks, Toretto began to trust O’Connor, despite knowing he wasn’t on the level and gave his blessing to him to begin dating his sister Mia. However, while attempting to make another score, Dom’s soon felt betrayal when the truth about O’Connor’s undercover status was revealed. This led to one of the best Fast & Furious movie climax scenes, as O’Connor and Dom raced once again on the streets of L.A. for freedom, with the latter to escape custody after being bested in the contest.
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Years On The Run (2004 – 2009)
Following his escape from L.A., Dominic then fled to Mexico where he first met fellow street racer Han Seoul-Oh. He soon moved to the Dominican Republic, as seen in the events of the short film Los Bandoleros, where he agreed to participate in a gas tanker heist. While in the Dominican Republic, and before the heist, Dominic finally married his childhood sweetheart Letty Ortiz, where he made a vow to forever be her “ride or die” partner. Then, as chronicled in the events of 2009’s Fast & Furious, Dom successfully pulled off the gas tanker heist in order to use the gas himself, and distribute it to the people.
Following the heist, Dominic learned of Letty Ortiz’s shocking “death” and returned to the United States despite being a wanted criminal. Once there, he found himself on the trail of drug lord Arturo Braga, who had something to do with Letty’s murder. He was then reunited with Brian O’Connor, then an FBI Agent, who was also investigating Braga and the duo put aside their differences to infiltrate the gang. Although Toretto was able to exact his revenge against Braga’s trigger-man Fenix Calderon, he was arrested in the process and was sentenced to 25 years in prison.
First Encounter With Luke Hobbs (2009 – 2011)
After receiving his prison sentence, Dom was freed from captivity as his crew, including Brian, turned over a prison transport bus. Once again on the run in the 2011 film, Fast Five, Dom traveled to Rio de Janeiro, where he and Brian were framed for the murder of DEA agents by a local drug lord, Hernan Reyes. Fast Five’s contribution to F&F’s legacy included the introduction of Diplomatic Security Service Agent, Luke Hobbs, who investigated the murder. With Hobbs on his tail, Dom and company staged a heist of $100 million and the agent allowed them a 24-hour head start to escape, not knowing they had successfully taken the money.
Reuniting With Letty (2013)
Having fled to the Canary Islands after Fast Five, Dom was approached by Luke Hobbs with information that Letty Ortiz was actually alive and working for the powerful criminal, Owen Shaw. That information was enough to convince Dom to join Hobbs in attempting to apprehend Shaw, and he brought his crew along in the events of 2013’s Fast & Furious 6. Dom soon learned that Letty was indeed working for Shaw, but she had lost her memory and she didn’t remember him. Letty’s return completely changed Fast & Furious, and Dom was eventually able to spark her memory enough to free her from Shaw.
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Getting Revenge For Han & Brian’s Departure (2014)
As seen in 2006’s The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift, Dom traveled to Tokyo and participated in a street race following the death of his friend Han. After recovering Han’s remains, Dom returned to the U.S. and was attacked by Han’s murderer, Deckard Shaw. The bombing destroyed the iconic Toretto house in Los Angeles, and nearly killed Mia, Brian, and their child. Dom was then recruited by the mysterious “Mr. Nobody” to bring down Shaw, and he succeeded with the help of Luke Hobbs in the film Furious 7 from 2015. Tired of the dangerous life, Brian and Mia stepped away from the family and parted ways with Dom.
Working For Cypher (2017)
While on his honeymoon with Letty in Havana, Dom was coerced by the cyberterrorist Cypher into working for her by kidnapping his former lover, Elena. The 2017 film The Fate of the Furious saw Dom turn evil, and go on several missions for Cypher including stealing the God’s Eye from “Mr. Nobody’s” base. She continued to blackmail him into several other dangerous missions, but he turned on her after learning he had a son with Elena that he never knew about. Dom was eventually able to avert a nuclear war and survived a missile attack from Cypher when he redirected it toward one of her submarines.
Reunion With Jakob (2019)
In 2019’s F9, Dom, Letty, and Dom’s son Brian were seen living a peaceful life in Thailand, when Tej Parker, Roman Pierce, and Ramsey arrived to inform him that Cypher had escaped captivity. While watching the footage of the jailbreak, Dom saw that one of the rogue agents was his estranged brother Jakob, and that spurred him out of retirement to bring him down. F9’s characters returned from every Fast & Furious movie, and Dom set out with his all-star team in pursuit of his brother who had aligned himself with Cypher.
Jakob’s mission to unite the pieces of Project Aries was eventually successful though, and the younger Toretto was eventually betrayed by his employer after he had completed his mission. Putting the past aside, Dom rescued his brother, and they made amends while trying to stop Cypher. Dom launched into orbit using a rocket car and was successful in destroying Cypher’s satellite before safely returning to Earth again. The family then returned to L.A. where the Toretto house was being rebuilt after it was destroyed by Shaw. Many Fast & Furious characters attended the barbecue including Brian O’Connor who was briefly seen pulling into the driveway.
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