Mad Max: Fury Road was a huge success when it came out in 2015. It not only did well at the box office, it got rave reviews from critics and audiences, some of whom called it one of the greatest action movies ever made. That left everyone primed for another one, but since it took franchise creator thirty-years to get that one made, everyone assumed it might be a long time before we got Mad Max 5. But it’s happening right now and they’re calling it Mad Max: The Wasteland.
The next Mad Max movie which will follow the character of Max will be Mad Max 5: The Wasteland. In addition to that sequel they’re aso working on another movie in the Mad Max universe. That movie is Mad Max: Furiosa and it’s going to be a prequel about Charlize Theron’s Furiosa character, not a sequel. It also won’t have Max in it. In the end it probably doesn’t matter who or what these action movie sequels are about. The real star of Fury Road was the incredible, eye-popping stunts. As long as Mad Max: The Wasteland and/or Furiosa has more of that, I don’t think it matters who acts in it.
The People Making Mad Max: The Wasteland
Writer and director George Miller has been talking about Mad Max: The Wasteland for a long time, so the project will only move forward with his involvement. Reportedly, Tom Hardy is also in, though not officially signed on since production has yet to make significant moves forward.
Mad Max 5: The Wasteland Planning
Mad Max 5: The Wasteland was believed to be greenlit. GWW reported that director George Miller was set to start working on the new action movie in the fall of 2020, after he finished directing another movie called Three Thousand Years of Longing. George Miller directed all four previous Mad Max movies and even though he’s now 75-years-old he’s doing the fifth one too. It turned out that instead of Wasteland, the movie that was actually greenlit was Mad Max: Furiosa, the prequel starring Anya-Taylor Joy as Furiosa and featuring Chris Hemsworth. That movie is set to begin filming in Australia in 2022.
There’s been talk of making an entirely separate movie the follows the events of Fury Road. However, if that movie gets made it will be made after Mad Max: The Wasteland. Given how long it takes director George Miller to make these Mad Max movies (decades in some cases) I wouldn’t bet on him ever actually getting around to making Mad Max 5, though he’s said that a script has been written.
Planning A Furiosa Prequel
Because unlike Mad Max: The Wasteland, Mad Max: Furiosa is a prequel, the part of Furiosa is being recast with a new actress. She was played by Charlize Theron in the first movie but since it’s a prequel they’ll need someone younger. Charlize Theron is now 44-years-old and she’s not happy at all about being replaced.
When THR how she feels about aging out of the Furiosa role Theron had this to say: “Yeah, it’s a little heartbreaking, for sure. I really love that character, and I’m so grateful that I had a small part in creating her. She will forever be someone that I think of, and reflect on fondly. Obviously, I would love to see that story continue, and if he feels like he has to go about it this way, then I trust him in that manner. We get so hung up on the smaller details that we forget the thing that we emotionally tap into has nothing to do with that minute thing that we’re focusing on.”
Actress Anya Taylor-Joy has been cast in the part of Furiosa in the prequel, but before that, Jodie Comer was also up for the role. 27-year-old Jodie is best known for her work on a British spy drama and 24-year-old Anya won acclaim in the 2015 period horror movie The Witch and more recently caught attention in the movie Glass and now Queens Gambit on Netflix.
The progress on the prequel is substantial, especially compared to Mad Max: The Wasteland. In addition to casting a new Furiosa the prequel movie is working on casting a male lead. This won’t be the Max character played by Tom Hardy, but rather a new male character. The Illuminerdi says Chris Hemsworth is currently the frontrunner for that part. Given the Australian filming location and past Australian casting for these movies, he’s a big name which makes sense.
What about Tom Hardy? There’s hope that he may play Max again in Mad Max: The Wasteland. He played the titular Mad Max in the first movie. But since Furiosa is a prequel, like Charlize Theron he’s too old to be involved. Also, since Max didn’t meet Furiosa until the events of Mad Max: Fury Road, it’s unlikely we’ll see Max at all in Furiosa since it’s a prequel and likely at least partly about Furiosa’s origin story.
The next time you’ll see Max is in Mad Max 5: The Wasteland. While George Miller is currently busy working on the Furiosa prequel, it may be several years before he gives us real news on Wasteland. Hopefully, Tom Hardy will still be age-appropriate for the role by then.