The Mad Max: Fury Road prequel focused on Imperator Furiosa is officially in "advance development" at Warner Bros. Mad Max creator George Miller returns to co-write and direct the film. Anya Taylor-Joy will star as the title character, who was played by Charlize Theron in Fury Road. She's joined by co-stars Chris Hemsworth and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II. The film hasn't yet received an official green light, but the addition of these key cast members puts it on that track. Miller is working with producing partner Doug Mitchell on the film. This will be the fifth Mad Max movie and the first to, presumably, not feature the title character, Max Rockatansky.
While there's no timetable from the studio, Miller previously stated that he hopes to shoot the Furiosa prequel in 2021. "So after we finish [Three Thousand Years of Longing], and hopefully everything settles down with the pandemic, we'll see what the world allows us to do with Furiosa," Miller said in a recent interview. "For the longest time, I thought we could just use CG de-aging on Charlize, but I don't think we're nearly there yet. Despite the valiant attempts on The Irishman, I think there's still an uncanny valley. Everyone is on the verge of solving it, particular Japanese video-game designers, but there's still a pretty wide valley, I believe."
In a previous interview, Theron expressed disappointment at being replaced in the prequel. "It's a tough one to swallow," she said. "Listen, I fully respect George, if not more so in the aftermath of making that film with him. He's a master, and I wish him nothing but the best. Yeah, it's a little heartbreaking, for sure. I really love that character, and I'm so grateful that I had a small part in creating her. She will forever be someone I think of and reflect on fondly.
"Obviously, I would love to see that story continue, and if he feels like he has to go about it this way, then I trust him in that manner. We get so hung up on the smaller details that we forget the thing that we emotionally tap into has nothing to do with that minute thing that we're focusing on."
Mad Max: Fury Road released in 2015 and topped many critics' year-end "best of" lists, as well as many lists for the best films of the decade in 2019. The film earned $374.7 million worldwide, earned a Best Picture nomination and a Best Director nomination for Miller from the Academy Awards, and won six other Oscars.