“We have a mantra: just because it’s a wasteland, doesn’t mean people stop creating beautiful things.”
Variety caught up with world-renowned director George Miller about the epic production behind this summer’s blockbuster Mad Max: Fury Road, as part of their award season ‘Contenders Conversations’ interviews.
Miller has never been shy to talk about the challenges involved in filming what was essentially “a good 130 days” of an extended chase scene, with such a dedication to real-life stunt work.
“Everything was real: real vehicles, real people, in the real desert, smashing into each other,” said Miller, and that work certainly isn’t easy “when you’re out there getting the dust in your eyes, and every other place!” Especially out in the harsh Namibian desert, where they had to move the shoot after seasonal problems in Australia.
The film itself had more of a rocky road than a Fury Road to production – it “was greenlit three times and fell over twice” – it lived, it died, it lived again! Luckily for us, though, that time “gave us a chance to dig down deep into the backstory,” which means there’s plenty of material ready to go for the sequel.
“The biggest thing was that the technology was getting more agile as we went,” explained Miller, which helped to realize “the aesthetic of the film,” – something that evolved as the process went on.
A massive part of the film was that “everything was found objects [were] re-purposed,” – from the clothes to the vehicles to the religion!
“As kind of crazy as some of the things were, they had to have a consistent logic – there was method in the madness, you could say!”
As for the star of the film, Charlize Theron, Miller said, “She was the only person who I ever thought about in the role.” Sadly, she’s not lined up to appear in the sequel(s), when they finally happen.
On that note Miller said: “All I can say is the intention is to make other films.”
“Stories insist on being made,” Miller said – and aren’t we glad for it!
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