Looking at how long Fury Road spent struggling to make it to the big screen, facing multiple setbacks over the course of decades, it’s been a pleasant surprise to see how quickly prequel Mad Max: Furiosa has been coming together by comparison. The principal cast is already in place, shooting is tentatively penciled in to kick off by the end of this year, and a June 2023 release date has been staked out.
Charlize Theron may have not been best pleased that she wasn’t invited back to play the title role despite her phenomenal turn in Fury Road, but as far as replacements go, Anya Taylor-Joy is about as good as it gets. The 25 year-old Golden Globe winner is one of the fastest-rising talents in the entire industry, with a string of high profile projects in the works as her career remains in an unstoppable state of ascendancy.
Miller did consider having Theron back as Furiosa despite the movie’s status as a prequel, but he didn’t feel as though the de-aging technology required to make it happen had evolved to his standards. In a new interview with Edgar Wright, the filmmaker revealed it was Wright’s upcoming psychological horror Last Night in Soho that convinced him Taylor-Joy was the person for the job.
“I’d known about Anya but I’d never seen her in a film until I saw her in Soho. And I remember thinking, ‘Gee, she’s interesting’. I started to say to you, ‘I’m looking for someone to cast as Furiosa’, and I barely got the sentence out before you said, ‘Don’t go any further, she’s great, she’s gonna be huge. She’s fantastic to work with’. You were so emphatic about it.”
Fury Road received almost universal critical acclaim, earned $375 million at the box office and landed ten nominations at the Academy Awards including Best Picture and Best Director, walking away with six prizes in the technical categories. That creates huge expectations for Mad Max: Furiosa, but with Taylor-Joy, Chris Hemsworth and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II on board, there’s no reason to doubt that Miller will be able to deliver.