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Fast X: Nathalie Emmanuel Cracks the Code to Ramsey’s Bigger Bandwidth as the Fast Saga’s Family Hacker

Every happy family needs at least one computer genius.

By Benjamin Bullard
Nathalie Emmanuel and Ludacris in Fast X (2023)

It might’ve taken a few Fast Saga movies for Tej Parker (Chris "Ludacris" Bridges) to evolve from ace street mechanic to ace tech genius. But when Ramsey (Nathalie Emmanuel) first arrived on the scene in Furious 7, her computer-whiz skills already were fully formed. After all, no one questions your hacking chops when you’re responsible for a device like God’s Eye — the omniscient gadget Ramsey created that became Furious 7's fought-over terrorist football.

Since that first Fast Saga debut, Ramsey’s gone from a minor background character to a full-fledged part of the extended Dom Toretto (Vin Diesel) family, teaming with Tej to tackle an ever-escalating slew of brainiac puzzles meant to ensnare the home team. She’s gotten closer and closer to the heart of the action as the movies (and cars) have piled up, too: In Fast X, she’s a moving target alongside Tej in Rome, bouncing around in the hijacked truck that Dante (Jason Momoa) controls from afar in a spectacularly boom-y bid to blow up the Vatican.

RELATED: Michelle Rodriguez reflects on the Fast Saga’s hip-hop ethos

Ramsey's evolution: From supporting side act to full-on hack-tion hero

Emmanuel says that Ramsey’s path from Fast Saga bit player to indispensable hack-tion hero has served as a relatable, voyeuristic ride-along for fans. “It’s been really fun watching that trajectory for her because I always felt like Ramsey was us in the movie,” Emmanuel explained during the movie’s recent red carpet premiere in — where else? — Rome. “She is not part of this. She’s like, ‘I know computers and now things are exploding near me. I’m being driven off of cliffs. There’s people shooting at me. This isn’t what my life is.’ And she had to adapt, so here we are!”

While most of the family’s key players have been there from the franchise’s earliest days, Ramsey’s among the later batch of newcomers to find a permanent place with the fam. Seeing an outsider like Ramsey find acceptance among Dom’s tight-knit crew, Emmanuel added, has given longtime fans a chance to relive the series’ signature feel — baked into the Fast Saga from the very start — for closing ranks around the characters who matter most in Dom’s world, and for tapping into that famous Toretto flavor of ride-or-die loyalty.

“I love that she’s kind of being challenged and being forced to do things outside her limit often,” she said, “but I think for someone whose history I would assume is quite lonely — hacking from a bedroom somewhere or a basement somewhere or a tower block in the middle of nowhere — to then be with this family and have to work alongside other people and then sometimes take command and sometimes throw herself into situations… That, to me is exciting and super fun.”

At least Ramsey’s got thick skin, all the better to play the good sport while swatting away all of Roman’s (Tyrese Gibson) harmlessly flat-humored come-ons. She’ll need it again — not to mention those prized hacking skills — when the already-hyped Fast 11 comes drifting ‘round the bend, bringing Dante back for a second chance at vengeance sometime in 2025.

Fast X is now playing in theaters everywhere. Get your tickets here!