George Miller’s ‘Mad Max’ Prequel ‘Furiosa’ Significantly Delayed

by John Jamison

The first of the action-packed Australian road movies came out in 1979, and it quickly gained popularity with a young Mel Gibson in the lead role. George Miller made three total “Mad Max” films as part of the original trilogy. In 2015, he continued his apocalyptic franchise with the release of “Mad Max: Fury Road.” Tom Hardy and Charlize Theron played Max and Furiosa, respectively.

And the newest offering was a major critical success, leading to six Oscar wins in technical categories. After a six-year wait, Miller’s follow-up, a prequel reportedly titled “Furiosa,” has now been pushed back even further.

The best time for Miller to strike may have been when the iron was still hot. “Mad Max: Fury Road” was famously a nightmare to shoot for nearly everyone involved. It wasn’t a huge financial success at the box office. But after taking home the most awards of any film at the 2016 Oscars, people were paying attention. It’s a wonder then that “Furiosa,” which according to India Times is going to be Australia’s biggest movie ever at $350 million, wasn’t slated to release until mid-2023.

Delays on “Fury Road” were typical. So it’s not a death sentence when Variety reports that the next “Mad Max” installment is being pushed back to Memorial Day of 2024. “Furiosa” will reportedly star Anya Taylor-Joy of “Queen’s Gambit” fame in the role originally played by Charlize Theron for the 2015 installment. Chris Hemsworth is also on board, though his character remains unclear. Also signed on is Yahya Abdul-Mateen II.

The upcoming “Mad Max” prequel will reportedly follow the origin story of Imperator Furiosa, a central character in “Fury Road.” Director George Miller said the inclusion of Anya Taylor-Joy is due to the character’s younger age and the story being spread out over years.

New ‘Mad Max’ Cast Member is Beyond Excited to Work With George Miller

All of you Netflix watchers out there are likely familiar with Anya Taylor-Joy for her portrayal of chess sensation Beth Harmon in “The Queen’s Gambit.” Previously, she starred in shows like “Peaky Blinders” and “The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance.”

Now, Taylor-Joy is excited about the prospect of playing such a physically demanding role. Especially for a director as accomplished as George Miller.

“The thing that makes me most excited about Furiosa is, No. 1, George Miller. That brain is incredible. I feel so lucky and privileged to spend time with him, and to grow alongside him. I’m also really excited to do something physical. To physically become something else is something that will weirdly give me a lot of peace. I’m quite excited to work hard.” Taylor-Joy said during a Variety Actors on Actors conversation from June.

She explained that she would have to start work on the new “Mad Max” movie in August. The plan was originally for her to work consistently through the initial release of 2023. But with the delays, who knows.