Miller's newest 'Mad Max' chapter made for physically demanding shoot, actors say

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Thursday, May 23, 2024
Anya Taylor-Joy, Chris Hemsworth star in latest 'Mad Max' installment
In "Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga," Anya Taylor-Joy plays a younger version of Charlize Theron's character from the previous series installment.

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- The box office got its first visit from a guy named "Mad Max" back in 1979.

Two sequels would follow in the 1980s.

Then, there was a 30-year break before Charlize Theron starred in "Mad Max: Fury Road."

The franchise returns with a prequel to her character's story, now with Anya Taylor-Joy taking over the title role in "Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga."

It's about the renegade warrior before she ever meets and teams up with Mad Max.

It's a grimy role, to say the least, which was great for Taylor-Joy.

"I actually quite enjoy it," she said. "You know, I kind of got my start in horror movies. And so to me, filmmaking was always very dirty and bloody. I feel very at home in it."

Her adversary here is played by a pretty much unrecognizable Chris Hemsworth. He spent three or four hours every day in hair, makeup and wardrobe. "You don't recognize the person staring back at you," Hemsworth said. "There's an extra leap into the immersion of the character. So I was very thankful for that, for the team that helped assemble that look."

As the story goes, Furiosa is taken away from her family as a little girl, with the words of her mother always in her mind: "Whatever you have to do, however long it takes, promise you'll find your way home."

Her journey is a grueling one and it's the hardest thing, physically, Taylor-Joy has ever done on film.

"Yes, I would say so," she said. "Mostly just because of the amount of time that it was. It was six and a half months. I was working six days a week pretty much every week."

She added, "It was an extraordinary amount of work, not just by myself but everybody that made this movie. But that's part of the enjoyment of making a Mad Max film."

This one came with some built-in history.

"We shot a lot in Broken Hill where the first film, 45 years ago, was shot," said Hemsworth, "and there's certain stretches of road and landscape that were from the first film and suddenly, nostalgia was wild."

Hemworth said it was very easy to immerse himself in that world, once again with George Miller at the helm. He's directed all of the "Mad Max" movies.

"Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga" opens Friday. It's rated R.