Transporter (franchise)

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Transporter Trilogy cover.jpg
DVD set containing the first three films
Created byLuc Besson
Robert Mark Kamen
Films and television
Television seriesTransporter: The Series (2012–2014)

Transporter (French: Le Transporteur) is a French action thriller film franchise, comprising four films released between 2002 and 2015, and a television series. Jason Statham plays Frank Martin in the first three movies, a professional freelance courier driver for hire. Statham is an accomplished martial artist, allowing him to do all the combat scenes involving Frank Martin himself. This permits the films' signature Hong Kong-style fight scenes, choreographed by Corey Yuen. Chris Vance portrays Frank Martin in the sequel television series and Ed Skrein portrays Frank Martin in the fourth film, a reboot.


Frank Martin[edit]

Frank Martin is the protagonist of the films and television series. He initially serves as a reluctant hero. He is portrayed as a former Special Forces operative who was a team leader of a search and destroy unit. His military background includes operations "in and out of" Lebanon, Syria and Sudan. He retires from this after becoming fatigued and disenchanted with his superior officers. In simple terms, he got tired of seeing his best efforts turned to nothing by the same people paying him to do the job. So he puts his skills to action as a private driver for hire.


The Transporter (2002)[edit]

Frank Martin (Jason Statham) is a highly-skilled driver known only as "The Transporter." He will transport anything, no questions asked, always on time, and he is known as the best in the business. He strictly follows three rules when transporting: Rule Number 1: "Once the deal is made, it is final", Rule Number 2: "No names", and Rule Number 3: "Never open the package." Frank inadvertently breaks his own rule, opens the package and finds a bound and gagged woman.

Transporter 2 (2005)[edit]

Frank has been hired as the driver/chauffeur for a wealthy family, in Miami, Florida. Martin bonds with their young son, whom he drives to school every day. When the boy is kidnapped, Frank must again act in order to protect his young "package" and his family. Eventually, Martin unravels a scheme involving biological weapons and the nefarious Gianni Chellini. Martin is forced to remove a bomb from the bottom of his car by executing an aerial corkscrew manoeuver underneath a crane. The crane catches the bomb and Martin escapes unharmed. Frank debuts the Audi A8 W12 in this film.

Inspector Tarconi plays an even more prominent role in this film. It is established that he and Frank are now friends, and Tarconi goes as far as to lie to the police to cover for Frank. His cooking prowess is established as well.

Transporter 3 (2008)[edit]

Frank has been pressured into transporting Valentina (Natalya Rudakova) the kidnapped daughter of Leonid Vasilev (Jeroen Krabbé), the head of the Environmental Protection Agency for Ukraine, from Marseille through Stuttgart and Budapest until he ends up in Odessa on the Black Sea. Along the way, with the help of Inspector Tarconi (François Berléand), Frank has to contend with the people who strong armed him to take the job, agents sent by Vasilev to intercept him, and the general non-cooperation of his passenger, who he realises is the package midway through the film. Despite Valentina's cynical disposition and Frank's resistance to get involved, Frank and Valentina fall for each other, while escaping from one life-threatening situation after another. Martin again drives an armoured Audi A8 W12 in the film, as well as a BMX bicycle.

The Transporter Refueled (2015)[edit]

In May 2013, at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival, a new reboot trilogy was announced with EuropaCorp and China's Fundamental Films co-producing and distributing the titles.[1][2] The films will likely be budgeted between $30 million to $40 million each and at least one will be shot in China.[3] Luc Besson will co-finance, distribute, produce and write all the films.[4] English actor Ed Skrein replaced Jason Statham as Frank Martin on the fourth installment of the series.[5] The fourth film, The Transporter Refueled, was released in the United States on 4 September 2015 with Camille Delamarre directing.

Collateral (2004)[edit]

In an interview with IGN, Louis Leterrier confirmed Jason Statham's cameo appearance in Collateral, providing a briefcase to Vincent (Tom Cruise), as having been a reprisal of Frank Martin.[6]


The Hollywood Reporter report that EuropaCorp and Fundamental Films will co-finance, produce and distribute the next three future installments in the Transporter franchise. The projects will be budgeted from $30 million to $40 million; at least one of the films will likely shoot in China.[7]


Transporter: The Series (2012–2014)[edit]

Transporter: The Series is a television series based on the Transporter films which premiered in 2012 on 11 October in Germany on RTL, and on 6 December in France on M6. Chris Vance took over the role of Frank from Jason Statham and was joined by Hungarian actress Andrea Osvárt, who played Carla, the leading female role in the series,[8] starring as a former Intelligence agent who organises his missions, and French actor François Berléand, the only returning actor from the film series, who reprised his role as Inspector Tarconi.[9] The show was initially supposed to premiere on the cable network Cinemax but Cinemax pulled out due to production problems. TNT picked up the show and aired the 12-episode first season on the TNT network. TNT also ordered a 12-episode second season which aired in the autumn of 2014.[10]

Cast and crew[edit]

Principal cast[edit]

Character Original series Spin-off film Reboot film Transporter: The Series
The Transporter Transporter 2 Transporter 3 Collateral The Transporter Refueled Season 1 Season 2
2002 2005 2008 2004 2015 2012 – 2013 2014
Frank "The Transporter" Martin Jason Statham Ed Skrein Chris Vance
Inspector Marcelle Tarconi François Berléand   François Berléand
Lai Kwai Shu Qi  
Darren "Wall Street" Bettencourt Matt Schulze  
Mr. Kwai Ric Young  
Vincent   Max Osterweis   Tom Cruise  
Gianni Chellini   Alessandro Gassman  
Audrey Billings   Amber Valletta  
Lola   Kate Nauta  
Stappleton   Keith David  
Jack Billings   Hunter Clary  
Max   Shannon Briggs  
Valentina Vasileva   Natalya Rudakova  
Johnson   Robert Knepper  
Leonid Tomilenko   Jeroen Krabbé  
Leonid's Aide   Alex Kobold  
Malcom Manville   David Atrakchi  
Flag   Yann Sundberg  
Ice   Eriq Ebouaney  
Max Durocher   Jamie Foxx  
Annie Farrell   Jada Pinkett Smith  
Ray Fanning   Mark Ruffalo  
Richard Weidner   Peter Berg  
Frank Pedrosa   Bruce McGill  
Ida Durocher   Irma P. Hall  
Daniel Baker   Barry Shabaka Henley  
Felix Reyes-Torrena   Javier Bardem  
Paco   Emilio Rivera  
Frank Martin Sr.   Ray Stevenson   Mentioned
Anna   Loan Chabanol  
María   Tatjana Pajković  
Gina   Gabriella Wright  
Qiao   Wenxia Yu  
Arkady Karasov   Radivoje Bukvić  
Maissa   Noémie Lenoir  
Dieter Hausmann   Charly Hübner
Carla Valeri   Andrea Osvárt  
Juliette Dubois   Delphine Chanéac  
Caterina "Cat" Boldieu   Violante Placido
Jules Faroux   Mark Rendall
Olivier Dassin   Dhaffer L'Abidine
Zara Knight   Elyse Levesque

Additional crew[edit]

Crew member The Transporter
Transporter 2
Transporter 3
The Transporter Refueled
Director Corey Yuen Louis Leterrier Olivier Megaton Camille Delamarre
Producer(s) Luc Besson
Stephen Chasman
Mark Gao
Luc Besson
Writer(s) Luc Besson
Robert Mark Kamen
Adam Cooper
Bill Collage
Luc Besson
Composer Stanley Clarke Alexandre Azaria
Editor Pierre Morel Christine Lucas-Navarro
Vincent Tabaillon
Camille Delamarre
Carlo Rizzo
Julien Rey
Cinematographer Nicolas Trembasiewicz Mitchell Amundsen Giovanni Fiore Coltellacci Christophe Collette
Production company(s) EuropaCorp
TF1 Films
Current Entertainment
TF1 Films
Current Entertainment
TPS Star
TF1 Films
Current Entertainment
Grive Productions
Apipoulaï Prod.
TF1 Films
Belga Films
Relativity Media
Distributor 20th Century Fox Lionsgate Films EuropaCorp
Runtime 92 minutes 87 minutes 104 minutes 96 minutes
Release date 11 October 2002 2 September 2005 26 November 2008 4 September 2015


Box office performance[edit]

Film Release date Box office gross Box office ranking Budget Ref.
North America Other territories Worldwide All time
North America
All time
The Transporter 11 October 2002 $25,296,447 $18,632,485 $43,928,932 #2,660 $21,000,000 [11]
Transporter 2 2 September 2005 $43,095,856 $42,071,783 $85,167,639 #1,701 $32,000,000 [12]
Transporter 3 26 November 2008 $31,715,062 $77,264,487 $108,979,549 #2,284 $30,000,000 [13]
The Transporter Refueled 4 September 2015 $16,029,670 $56,600,000 $72,629,670 #3,669 $22,000,000 [14]
Total $116,137,035 $194,568,755 $310,705,790 $105,000,000 [15]

Critical and public response[edit]

Film Rotten Tomatoes Metacritic CinemaScore
The Transporter 54% (127 reviews)[16] 51 (27 reviews)[17] B+[18]
Transporter 2 52% (121 reviews)[19] 56 (29 reviews)[20] B+[18]
Transporter 3 39% (113 reviews)[21] 51 (26 reviews)[22] B−[18]
The Transporter Refueled 16% (100 reviews)[23] 31 (19 reviews)[24] B−[18]


  1. ^ "'Transporter' sequels announced at Cannes Film Festival". 22 May 2013. Retrieved 24 July 2013.
  2. ^ "Cannes 2013: Three New Films In The Transporter Franchise Announced". 22 May 2013. Retrieved 24 July 2013.
  3. ^ "New Transporter trilogy bound for big screen with parts 4 5 and 6 announced". 22 May 2013. Retrieved 24 July 2013.
  4. ^ "Sequel Bits: 'Transformers 4', 'Expendables 3', 'Transporter 4-6', 'The Hobbit', 'Anchorman 2', 'Pacific Rim 2'". 21 May 2013. Retrieved 24 July 2013.
  5. ^ "Transporter 4 will star Ed Skrein in Jason Statham role". 10 February 2014. Retrieved 15 February 2014.
  6. ^ Carle, Chris (31 August 2005). "Louis Leterrier Interviewed". Retrieved April 17, 2019.
  7. ^ "'Cannes: Three New 'Transporter' Films in the Works". 19 May 2013. Retrieved 1 January 2020.
  8. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (20 May 2011). "Cinemax's 'Transporter' Series Casts Male & Female Leads". Deadline Hollywood.
  9. ^ Goldberg, Lesley (23 June 2011). "'Transporter': 'Lost's' Stephen Williams to Helm Pilot (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Los Angeles, California.
  10. ^ Roxborough, Scott (8 April 2014). "MIPTV: 'Transporter' Series Reboot for TNT Heavy on Action". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 21 December 2014.
  11. ^ "The Transporter (2002)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 21 December 2014.
  12. ^ "Transporter 2 (2005)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 21 December 2014.
  13. ^ "Transporter 3 (2008)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 21 December 2014.
  14. ^ "The Transporter Refueled (2015)". The Numbers. Retrieved November 24, 2015.
  15. ^ "Franchise: Transporter". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 25 December 2020.
  16. ^ "The Transporter (2002)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 21 December 2014.
  17. ^ "The Transporter Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved 21 December 2014.
  18. ^ a b c d "CinemaScore". CinemaScore. Archived from the original on 2018-12-20.
  19. ^ "Transporter 2 (2005)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 21 December 2014.
  20. ^ "Transporter 2 Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved 21 December 2014.
  21. ^ "Transporter 3 (2008)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved 21 December 2014.
  22. ^ "Transporter 3 Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved 21 December 2014.
  23. ^ "The Transporter Refueled reviews". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved September 6, 2015.
  24. ^ "The Transporter Refueled reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved September 6, 2015.

External links[edit]