Aw, anonymous, don’t be scared! He’s a much better actor than Paul Walker, so I don’t think the same fate awaits him, but I do think that maybe, just maybe, Taylor and his team need to re-evaluate the direction they’re going with him. The widespread perception among non-Taylor fans seems to be that it was a mistake for the studios to hand over these big projects to someone who was more or less a total unknown. We know, and clearly the studios know, it’s not his fault, but his publicity team has done nothing to counteract the perception that he’s the problem. They could be scoring him a strategic interview or two here and there in a mainstream publication where he talks about how he’s going to keep on trucking and how he was disappointed but not regretful and turned it into part of the “hard luck male Cinderella story” narrative that they seem to have going for him, but… nothing. It’s like they hope that if they ignore it, it’ll go away.
I can’t find the interview from earlier this year, but Taylor has said that in the worst case scenario for this year, he would just… keep working. He’s got the ambition and the talent, but (IMHO) he doesn’t have a savvy team shaping his career, reining him in and guiding his choices the way Channing Tatum, Ryan Gosling and other actors in that age group have, and he’s had a lot of bad luck. But “Savages” has performed respectably, and “Lone Survivor” will likely do well, so maybe by the time “Need For Speed” comes out, it’ll be the right time again. Spielberg is throwing his weight behind it, and he wants Taylor for the part, so that actually bodes really well. If Hollywood execs were buying into the bad press, they wouldn’t be trotting out press releases about how much they want to work with him.