Read them here: 1. Mad Max: Fury Road is set within the year 2060. Civilization is hanging on by a thread due to a series of catastrophic events, which has forced everyone to survive within a desert atmosphere.
Max is one of those survivors, but he is on his lonesome due the death of his family. Max ends up on the run after being caught and tortured by a maniacal leader named King Immortan Joe (played by Hugh Keays-Byrne) and his group, the War Boys. After running into a women named Imperator Furiosa and her band of former female captives (The Five Wives), Max looks to keep them safe from King Immortan Joe. Joe seeks them out because of his mission to use the Five Wives to help breed the next generation of the human race in his image.
2. Mad Max: Fury Road’s desert setting came to life due to its being filmed in the Namib Desert. This coastal desert, which is located in southern Africa, is popularly referred to as “the land that God made in anger.” Not only is it the oldest desert in the world (aged roughly 55 to 80-million years old), its temperature can reach up to over 100-degrees or more.
3. Over 80% of the effects seen in the film are real practical effects, stunts, make-up and sets. CGI was used sparingly mainly to enhance the Namibian landscape, remove stunt rigging and for Charlize Theron’s left hand which in the film is a prosthetic arm.
4. This is the 4th film in the Mad Max film series. The Mad Max film series was originally created by Hollywood luminaries James McCausland and George Miller. Mel Gibson originally played the lead role of “Mad” Max Rockatansky in the series 1st run of three films – Mad Max (1979), Mad Max 2 (1981) and Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome (1985). Throughout the entire run of past Mad Max films, the theme and international tone has stayed the same – an Australian dystopian action film that’s set within a post-apocalyptic world. The men and women who still reside in that world make their way around with the use of wildly designed automobiles.
5. While the film has garnered a mostly positive critical response, it has also gotten caught up in some controversy. Some have complained about its perceived pro-feminist agenda. This controversy has been brought on by the major screen time given to Charlize Theron’s character and the use of Vagina Monologues author Eve Ensler’s material. Men’s Rights Activists have even called upon men to boycott the film, a movement that has been detailed in this blog post by Aaron Clarey.
6. While conducting an interview with io9.com, actress Charlize Theron revealed that her and the rest of the cast worked off of a storyboard instead of a script. She also noted that they actually shot a huge scene for 138 days.
7. DC Comics’ Vertigo imprint will be releasing a series of art-based book based on Mad Max: Fury Road in May 2015. Mad Max: Fury Road: Inspired Artists will feature several artists’ take on the movie’s universe. A set of four prelude comic book tales will follow several of the film’s cast, too – Nux, Immortan Joe, Furiosa, and Mad Max. Staring on May 20, 2015, the series will begin with MAD MAX: FURY ROAD: NUX & IMMORTAN JOE #1 and be followed by another installment each month. Those proceeding releases include MAD MAX: FURY ROAD: FURIOSA #1 and MAD MAX: FURY ROAD: MAD MAX #1 & #2.
8. This 4th installment in the Mad Max series has been stuck in its development stages for close to 25 years now. The wheels started turning in film director/producer George Miller back in August 1998. At one point, the film was scheduled to undergo shooting in 2001, but the traumatic event of 9/11 put those plans on hold. A script for the film surfaced in 2003, which led to its pre-production stages going into motion that same year. But, the movie failed to gain any ground once again due to security concerns over the film’s planned filming location in Namibia. Mel Gibson had originally been cast to star in the film, but he left the project after production was brought to a halt. After several years passed, Mad Max: Fury Road finally went underway in 2012 (it wrapped up filming on December 17, 2012).
9. George Miller and Brendan McCarthy ended up writing a ton of material for Mad Max: Fury Road. So much so that they had enough material for two extra scripts that will lead to more films in the series. A future sequel focused on Charlize Theron’s character (Mad Max: Furiosa) has already been announced. Tom Hardy has already signed on to star in four more Mad Max films.
10. Mad Max: Fury Road has pulled in a good amount of high rating from critics before it’s worldwide release. Rotten Tomatoes has the movie listed under a 98-percent positive rating thus far. IGN awarded the film with a rating of 9.2.
11. The flame-shooting guitarist is Australian artist/musician Sean Hape, better known as Iota. In an interview on Vice (2013), he said the guitar weighed 132 pounds, and shot real gas-powered flames, which he controlled using the whammy bar.
12. In creating the look of the film, director George Miller laid down two stipulations for the production to follow. Firstly the cinematography would be as colorful as possible in order to differentiate the film from other post apocalyptic movies which typically have bleak desaturated colors. Secondly the art direction would be as beautiful as possible, as Miller reasoned that people living in the post apocalypse would try to find whatever scraps of beauty they could in their meager environment.
13. The film editor, Margaret Sixel, is director George Miller’s wife. When she asked her husband why he thought she should do it as she had never edited an action film before, Miller replied, “Because if a guy did it, it would look like every other action movie.”
14. The jacket worn by Tom Hardy is a replica of the one worn by Mel Gibson in the second two movies of the original trilogy. The Gibson jacket was found in storage at Kennedy-Miller and copied heavily.
15. In a Cannes press conference for the movie, Tom Hardy apologized to George Miller for the reportedly complicated relationship between the star and the director during filming. He stated: “There was no way, I mean, I have to apologize to you because I got frustrated. There was no way George could have explained what he could see in the sand when we were out there. Because of the due diligence that was required to make everything safe and so simple, what I saw was a relentless barrage of complexities, simplified for this fairly linear story. I knew he was brilliant, but I didn’t know how brilliant until I saw it. So, my first reaction was ‘Oh my god, I owe George an apology for being so myopic.'”
16. Tom Hardy suffered a broken nose during filming when Charlize Theron accidentally elbowed him. She was wearing a green cast at the time which was used as a background for graphics artists to digitally remove Furiosa’s arm.
17. The older actresses playing the Vuvalini did their own stunts.
18. According to Tom Hardy, he had lunch with Mel Gibson to discuss him taking over the iconic role of Max Rockatansky. Gibson told him that he was fine with it, and gave Hardy his blessing.
19. The 78-year old Melissa Jaffer explained why she took a part in the film: “When this role came along, I thought well, I won’t get another chance like this before I die, and that’s why I took it. It was absolutely wonderful”.
20. The gesture made by the war boys when they mesh their fingers together is the sign of the V8; they literally revere and worship the power of the engine. It may also be viewed as a reference to Valhalla.
21. John Seale came out of retirement to head the film’s cinematography.
22. Max and the main antagonist, Immortan Joe, never directly interact with each other, apart from when Max hijacks the People Eater’s Limousine. They exchange gunshots during the takeover.
23. Mel Gibson was at the Cannes premiere and apparently approved the movie. According to director George Miller: “Mel was at the premiere of the movie and I sat next to him. We hadn’t seen each other in a long time. Mel is someone who, in a sense, cannot lie. And he started chuckling during the movie and I thought, There’s that chuckle I remember! Mel kept chuckling and he started digging me in the ribs. . . . He gave me great perspective because he is a great actor, but in the end he is a really great director.”
24. As in the previous movies in this series, many characters’ names are never said in full or at all onscreen and are only provided in the credits.
25. The film used three identical War Rigs, the large main truck in the film. They were based on a Czechoslovakian all-wheel drive military vehicle.
26. Production Designer Colin Gibson was tasked with the solemn duty of creating 88 vehicles that would look at home in a wasteland occupied by a violently insane gang that loves to wear too much sunscreen. Gibson mentioned that Miller ordered him to “make it cool or I’ll kill you”, which motivated Colin to create an inspired fleet of visually-unique, vehicular agents of chaos. Each and every one of the designs, regardless of their craziness or impracticality, lead to functioning vehicles capable of blasting through Namibian deserts at high speeds. After production finished, more than 150 of these post-apocalyptic transports were built, and more than 75 of them were torn in half, blown up or otherwise ripped into shreds.
27. That sense of unpredictability in Tom Hardy has manifested itself on and off screen. His travails with delinquency and drug addiction in a misspent youth are well documented, while his scuffle with Shia LaBeouf on the set of Lawless is further evidence of Hardy’s mercurial nature. The actor himself is refreshingly casual about his combative reputation – he has been quoted as saying, “I have a reputation for being difficult… and I am” – but Miller was understandably anxious to ensure that Hardy had the temperament to go with his charisma before offering him the part. Seeking to better understand what Hardy was like on set, Miller contacted Christopher Nolan, who had already worked with the actor while filming Inception and would do so again by casting him as Bane in The Dark Knight Rises. Nolan assured Miller that Hardy was thoroughly professional and helped pave the way for the Mad Max creator to confirm in 2010 that he had found his new leading man.
28. Mad Max: Fury Road was a massive undertaking, requiring up to 1,700 workers on set to film the action, including over 150 stunt performers, stunt drivers, camera crews and even a team of snake wranglers to clear the path of deadly, desert serpents that impeded production. The stunt crew alone worked more than 15,000 person-days during the shoot, which translates into well over 40 years worth of effort, much of which was spent in high-risk scenarios that would terrify the majority of humans.These numbers don’t include behind-the-scenes work that took place off-site, such as special effects, design and marketing. Even though Miller estimates that 90% of the stunts were live-action, several additional teams were also required to create around.
29. One of the signature vehicles of the Mad Max franchise is Max’s custom, 1973 XB GT Ford Falcon Coupe, known as the Interceptor. The Interceptor made its appearance in the first movie, when Max hunts down the killers of his child with the help of the V8 monstrosity. In Fury Road, during a scene that required the spectacular crash of the Interceptor, the stunt crew had to figure out the best way of flipping the vehicle in the safest way possible. The solution was an innovation called the Flipper, which is a flat blade of steel that slaps the ground and retracts, giving the stunt driver control over when the car flips. This safe new way of flipping cars work incredibly well, with stunt driver Gary Norris claiming he achieved eight and a half flips during testing, “which would have been a world record on film”.
30. Imperator Furiosa’s getaway vehicle is a mashup of different trucks and cars, combining a Chevy Fleetmaster, Tatra and Volkswagen Beetle together with a fuel pod, tools, hidden weapons and a fuel tank. The steering wheel also has a skull attached, which is a nice touch. This heavy-duty setup is powered by a pair of V8 engines distributing power through a six-wheel-drive mechanism. According to Colin Gibson, despite the fact that Charlize Theron didn’t have to drive the massive War Rig, she chose to do so anyway, hurtling through the desert at speeds above 50 MPH.