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Mad Max Fury Road cleans up



How good is that. Mad Max: Fury Road is set to become the most successful Australian movie, after winning six Academy Awards and taking nearly $US400 million ($560 million) at the box office worldwide.

The post-apocalyptic film will bring home double the number of awards of the previous most successful Oscar-winning Australian film, The Piano.

Here's some things you may not have known about 'Fury Road'. 

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.
The flame-shooting guitarist is Australian artist/musician Sean Hape, better known asIota. 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.
Margaret Sixel (who won the Oscar for Editing) had 480 hours of footage to edit; watching it took three months.
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.
On April 3, 2015, Tom Hardy announced he would sign on for 3 more Mad Max films.
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."
 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.
Instead of the reboot being a remake of Mad Max (1979), revealing how Max Rockantasky became The Road Warrior, George Miller decided that the reboot will take place in the post-apocalyptic Australia, years after the new Max (Tom Hardy) lost his family, because he did not wish to do a remake or retell the story that had already been told and had wanted to update the universe and the wasteland and wanted new moviegoers to remember Max as a man with nothing to lose after losing his family.
 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.
According to George Miller the film's storyboard was made even before the screenplay. The reason behind that was because Miller envisioned the film as a continuous chase, with little dialogue and focusing on the visuals. The storyboard was made with the collaboration of five artists and had about 3,500 panels.
To prepare themselves to go into battle, ready to sacrifice their lives for Immortan Joe, the War Boys spray their lips and teeth with a silver substance, very much like common spray paint. Both the War Boys and Immortan Joe often speak about this as though it is a religious ritual, saying that it will allow them to enter "the gates of Valhalla, shiny and chrome". However, in a May 2015 interview with CraveOnline, actorHugh Keays-Byrne, who plays Immortan Joe, said that this practice, which the War Boys think is purely ritualistic, actually involves the inhalation of "...a very euphoric drug" that keeps the War Boys high and suicidally devoted to Immortan Joe. Another clue to the spray's narcotic properties is the fact that "chrome" and "chroming" are Australian slang terms for inhalant abuse. Writer/director George Miller said that he got the idea for this from Australian filmmaker David Bradbury's 1981 Vietnam War documentary "Front Line", in which Cambodian soldiers preparing for battle suspend small jade figurines of Buddha from their mouths with little straps.
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.'"
Charlize Theron reportedly shaved her head for the role of Furiosa and as a result had to wear a wig for her role in A Million Ways to Die in the West (2014).
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".
According to Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, whenever she or the other Wives' clothes slipped, Tom Hardy would never tell them directly, instead he would act out a cartoonish eye popping out action to let them know.
 This is the second Mad Max featuring Hugh Keays-Byrne. He played the villain Toecutter in Mad Max (1979).
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.
The cake-decorating company Wilton makes a decorative "Color Mist" in silver that is meant to be sprayed onto baked goods to give them a silver sheen. Before May 2015, the Amazon listing for this product contained a few pages of reviews only from bakers opining on the quality of the product when used as intended (on cakes). But after the release of Mad Max: Fury Road, both the comments section and FAQ on the Amazon listing were filled with comments from users posting as though they were War Boys or Immortan Joe "reviewing" the product that the War Boys spray onto their mouths before going into battle. As of mid-June 2015, there are nineteen pages of Mad Max-related "reviews" of the Wilton product on Amazon.
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.
John Seale came out of retirement to head the film's cinematography.
Even though it is an independent movie in the series, it has references to other Mad Max pictures: the opening shot resembles the beginning of Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1981) and the music box one of the wives carries is a nod to the music box Max gives the Feral Kid in the same movie. When Max suggests to Furiosa and the other women that they turn the rig around and drive back to where they have just come from this is a nod to Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1981), as is Max's misfiring shotgun and when Max first approaches Furiosa with an unconscious body over his shoulder. He has a metallic brace on his leg just like in Mad Max 2, which is normally worn because of a pelvic injury and was presumably worn in that film because of the injury he sustains being hit by the motorcycle at the end of the previous film Mad Max(1979). Max is staked up front on Nux's Chevrolet coupe, same as the hostages on Lord Humugus' vehicle.
George Miller told cinematographer John Seale to keep the main actor centered in the screen so that the viewer's eye did not have to search the screen due to the film's fast editing style. According to Seale, Miller said "Keep the crosshairs on her nose!" Seale, used to composing an anamorphic shot took a while to get used to this technique. He was not used to actors being cut off in the edges of the frame.
The movie was almost filmed in 2003 on location in Namibia but the project was put on hold due to security concerns related to trying to film in Namibia, because the United States and many other countries had tightened travel and shipping restrictions. With the start of the Iraq War the film was abandoned until 2009.
The script contains almost no profanities. The Dag abuses Max by saying, "He's a crazy smeg who eats schlanger." The use of the word 'smeg' echoes its use in the TV seriesRed Dwarf (1988), where it was used as an alternative for various expletives. There was almost no swearing in the earlier Mad Max movies, either. Schlange is German for snake.
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.
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."
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.
In the German-dubbed version seen in Germany, as in the original English version, the Buzzards speak Russian. In the Russian-dubbed version seen in Russia, they speak German. This way, they sound foreign and evil to everyone.
When Max is tied to the front of Nux's car, there is a skull with a pilot's cap and goggles on a spike above him. This is a reference to the Gyro Captain, who appeared in Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1981).
While on location in Africa filming Mad Max: Fury Road (2015) in June 2012, Dayna Porter, the stunt double for Charlize Theron, and Dane Grant, the rehearsal double forTom Hardy, met, fell in love, and, in March 2013, got married. In February 2014, they had their first child, a son named Ryder. Dayna, who changed her last name to Grant after the marriage, founded a school in New Zealand for training stunt performers, and has performed stunts in other projects based in New Zealand, such as Xena: Warrior Princess (1995) and Hercules: The Legendary Journeys (1995). Another stunt performer in the film also met his spouse on the set: in February 2015, stuntman Ben Smith-Petersen married actress Riley Keough, who played Capable.
The "crows" on stilts are the boys abandoned by the Vuvalini when the green place turned sour.
There is a fan theory that Mad Max in this film is actually the Feral Kid from the second film, Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1981). Max does not speak very much in this film, and he grunts a lot like the Feral Kid. He also has a music box, like the one that Max gives the Feral Kid in the second film. However, a Vertigo comic miniseries cowritten by George Miller establishes that Hardy's Max is the same character as Mel Gibson's Max.
Counting the opening voiceovers and discounting any grunts, Max Rockatansky has exactly 52 lines.
After George Miller screened some footage at SWSX film festival, a man stood up and asked: "How the hell did you film that!?" That man was none other than director Robert Rodriguez (Dusk till Dawn & Sin City).
The first Mad Max film where Max is credited by his full name Max Rockatansky.
Writer and feminist Eve Ensler (The Vagina Monologues) was consulted to enhance the portrayal of female characters.
George Miller directed the entire Mad Max action franchise, noted for its violence. Ironically, he is also director of three family friendly movies: the second of the Babe movies, Babe: Pig in the City (1998), and both Happy Feet movies, Happy Feet (2006) and Happy Feet 2 (2011).
Director George Miller has written a background story for The Doof Warrior, the heavy metal musician, played by Australian singer/songwriter Sean Hape (AKA Iota), playing the flame-shooting electric guitar on The Doof Wagon.
 Quentin Kenihan, the actor playing Corpus Colossus, is disabled in real life (he has osteogenesis imperfecta - previously depicted in the 2000 film Unbreakable where Samuel L. Jackson's character was born with Type 1 Osteogenesis imperfecta). No prosthetics, puppets or special effects were used, the only alterations to Mr. Kenihan were makeup.
At the final vehicle battle, one of the Immortan Joe's henchmen scares Furiosa, before attacking her, with the exact same hiss as the Toecutter in Mad Max (1979).
Former SAS soldier Jon Iles, who played the War Boy named The Ace, also headed a security team on the film's set to ensure the safety of the cast, crew, and their families.
Near the end of the credits there is a memorial dedication that reads "Lance Allen Moore II, May 24, 1987 - March 10, 2015." Moore was a Mad Max fan killed in a motorcycle accident near Silverton, New South Wales, Australia, where Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1981) was filmed.
This is the second Mad Max film for screenwriter Nick Lathouris. As an actor, he played a brief role in Mad Max (1979).
Several vehicles, including The War Rig, Immortan Joe's double-decker 1959 Cadillac DeVille Gigahorse, The People Eater's Mercedes-Benz Limousine, and The Bullet Farmer's Valiant Charger Peacemaker, as well as The Doof Warrior's Doof Wagon and many of the vehicles driven by the War Boys, are left-hand drive. The appearance of left-hand drive vehicles is a first in the Mad Max movies. The previous films featured only Australian vehicles, which are right-hand drive, such as the rigs seen in Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1981) and Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (1985) and Max's famous 1973 Ford Falcon XB GT V8 Pursuit Special (aka The Interceptor), seen in Mad Max (1979) and Mad Max 2 (and this film). In real life, the Australian states and territories (since 2000) exempt the conversion of left hand drive automobiles to right hand drive if the vehicle is 30 years old (15 years old if registered in Western Australia) but the rear turn signals must have orange/amber lenses.
The budget for this film is estimated to be between US$100 million and $150 million, while the converted budget for the original Mad Max (1979) is placed at around $316,620. That means that without inflation, the budget between the two films increased by well over three hundred times. (With inflation, the difference is 100 - 150x.)
Jeremy Renner campaigned for the role of Mad Max. At one point the film's long development, Michael Biehn was considered for the role of Max Rockatansky, as wereChanning Tatum and Heath Ledger, before his untimely death in 2008. Sam Worthingtonstated that, like Eric Bana, he has never been approached for the role of Mad Max, despite widespread rumors that circulated the web following the film's announcement.James Frecheville auditioned for a part.
The paracord bracelet that Max wears belongs to Tom Hardy himself.
An R-rated version and a PG-13 version had been made. After test screenings, Warner Bros had decided to release the R-rated version.
This is director George Miller's first R-rated movie since The Witches of Eastwick(1987).
Nicholas Hoult learned how to knit from a makeup artist during the seven-month shoot in Namibia.
Actors were digitally duplicated in post production to expand the crowd scenes so in reality only a few actors were actually needed on set during filming.
Rosie Huntington-Whiteley remarked that the cast and crew fraternized a lot after work during the shoot since they were all residing in a small Namibia town (the nearest to the desert) without any tourist attractions or fine dining. Swakopmund is a major Namibian city the capital of the Erongo Region with a population of 44,725 and the major coastal tourist town in Namibia with lots of restaurants and tourist attractions. Part of the crew also stayed in Walvis Bay 41 kms south population population 85,000 the major port for Namibia Botswana Angola Zimbabwe and Zambia. So Namibia's second and third biggest cities!
The character Toast the Knowing is named after visual effects crew member Shyam V. Yadav, who is known for serving free French toast (and hugs) to thousands of people all over the world.
Riley Keough, the actress who plays the red-haired bride, Capable, is daughter of Lisa Marie Presley and grand-daughter of Elvis Presley. In real life, Elvis Presley purchased Cadillacs for his friends and family which outnumber his personal collection (in real life he purchased 14 1959 Cadillacs as 'give away' automobiles, mostly used for charitable causes; in real life he does not own the 1959 model since he was stationed in West Germany when serving in the U.S. Army). Only film to date where Keough is seen in an automobile connected with her grandfather, who was an admirer of the Cadillac product line.
With a runtime of two hours, this is the longest film in the Mad Max series.
First 'Mad Max' movie since Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (1985), a gap of thirty years.
During the flashback sequence after going through the crows, you can see eyes popping out briefly. This is an homage to Mad Max (1979) when a rider crashes into the front of a semi.
When Max awakes abruptly from his dream right after the blue sequence, the last image of his dream is a close view of eyes popping out of a face. This footage is fromMad Max (1979), when Toecutter is killed.
Tom Hardy had a dog named Max that was given to him when he was a teenager, he passed away in 2011. The dog's name was an honor to Mad Max (1979). Years later, Hardy played the title character in Mad Max: Fury Road.
George Miller cited Akira (1988) as an inspiration for what he wanted to do with the franchise.
George Miller and Charlize Theron didn't get along with Tom Hardy during filming. They both found him difficult to work with.
Production was originally set to film around 2011 in the traditional setting of Broken Hill, Australia, but due to heavy rainfall transforming the desert landscape into a lush meadow of flowers, the production was moved to Namibia.
Second unit director and supervising stunt coordinator Guy Norris was in charge of over 150 stunt performers, which included Cirque du Soleil performers and Olympic athletes.
The girl who Max sees in his visions, commonly believed to be his daughter, is in fact Glory the Child, who can be seen in the comic series. It can also be noted that she is seen being run down in a desert by a selection of vehicles, while Max's child was killed by a biker gang prior to the war.
Megan Gale, who plays The Valkyrie, was previously cast as Wonder Woman in George Miller's film Justice League: Mortal before it was canceled. This is her first Hollywood film.
The idea for a fourth instalment occurred to George Miller in August 1998 when he was walking in an intersection in Los Angeles. About a year later, while travelling from Los Angeles to Australia, the idea coalesced. Miller conceived a story where "violent marauders were fighting, not for oil or for material goods, but for human beings." The film was set to shoot in 2001 through 20th Century Fox, but was postponed because of the September 11 attacks that same year. "The American dollar collapsed against the Australian dollar, and our budget ballooned", Miller said, adding that he "had to move on to Happy Feet (2006) because there was a small window when that was ready". Mel Gibson was also set to reprise his role as the lead character. Miller ended up re-casting the role because of controversies surrounding Gibson and because he wanted Max to remain at a younger age, as the "same contemporary warrior
Tom Hardy had been considered for the role of John Connor in another reboot,Terminator Genisys (2015). James Cameron, the director and creator of the "Terminator" franchise had cited Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1981) as one of his influences behind The Terminator (1984).
The crossed belts that the Valkyrie, played by Megan Gale, wears are the same belts Max wore in Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (1985). The brass belt buckle has been covered or replaced.
George Miller described the film as "a very simple allegory, almost a western on wheels".
Although the character Mad Max is an Australian, he has yet to be played by an Australian actor. Mel Gibson, the first Mad Max, although raised in Australia, was born in the USA. And Tom Hardy, the second Mad Max, was born in England.
In February 2013, a leaked draft from the Namibian Coast Conservation and Management group accused the producers of damaging parts of the Namib Desert, endangering a number of plant and animal species. However, the Namibia Film Commission said it had "no reservations" after visiting the set during production. It disputed claims reported in the media, calling the accusations "unjust rhetoric".
According to Visual Effects supervisor Andrew Jackson, there was over 2000 VFX shots used throughout the movie.
According to George Miller, 90% of the effects were practical.
This film continues the pattern of each Mad Max film, in that each one has an actor returning in a different role (Hugh Keays-Byrne here). Bruce Spence appeared as Gyro Captain in Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1981) and Jebediah in Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (1985), whilst Max Fairchild appeared in Mad Max (1979) as Benno and as a hostage in Mad Max 2 (1981).
Dane Grant and Dayna Porter, the respective stunt doubles for Tom Hardy and Charlize Theron, later got married after meeting on the set of the film.
Certain screenings have shown the film in black & white. There was a rumour that this print would appear on the home video release, and that George Miller tried to press Warner Bros to include it, but it doesn't appear that's going to happen.
Cinematographer John Seale, who came out of retirement to shoot the film, outfitted his camera crew with six Arri Alexa Pluses and four Alexa Ms, as well as a number of Canon EOS 5Ds and Olympus PEN E-P5s that were used as crash cams for the action sequences.
George Miller invited playwright Eve Ensler to act as an on-set adviser. Impressed with the script's depth and what she saw as feminist themes, she spent a week in Namibia, where she spoke to the actors about issues of violence against women.
The music cue "Claw Trucks", composed by Dutch musician Tom Holkenborg (AKAJunkie XL) for the film's score, is a revamp of his earlier composition "Dauntless Attack", written for the film Divergent (2014).
In the original film, the character Valkyrie is first introduced trapped in a cage and nude. In the international version, the scene was changed where she is shown wearing underwear. This was possibly done to avoid the film getting a higher age rating in some countries.
At the beginning of the film, Max has long hair which is cut short by the War Boys. A plausible nod to the previous film Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (1985) in which Max had long hair, which is later cut short by Savannah Nix, when she rescues him from the desert
Australian showbiz legend Bert Newton was one of the first character actors cast by director George Miller when the movie was to be filmed in Broken Hill, NSW, the original location for Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1981) also known as The Road Warrior. Unfortunately rainfall had completely changed the desert landscape and years later the decision was made to move the production to Namibia. It was then, in mid 2012, that Bert Newton decided to drop out of the production, going on to appear as FDR in the Australian stage revival of "Annie".
Teresa Palmer was originally cast but due to delays of the production, she dropped out and was replaced by Abbey Lee.
Max is wearing a metal knee brace like the one in The Road Warrior. In that movie he wears it because he was shot in the knee in the original Mad Max movie.
When Nux head-butts Slit, there is a flash of white, which echoes a shot in Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1981): Wez head-butts a compound defender and there is a similar flash of white to show the impact
Trivia bits thanks to imdb.com and Greg Vincent

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