Just a few days ago, we talked about a report E! Online had put out which stated that RocknRolla star Tom “Handsome Bob” Hardy and Charlize Theron were on the short list to star in George Miller’s 4th installment of the Mad Max series, Fury Road. E! Online didn’t have any solid confirmation regarding the rumors so the information was to be taken with a grain of salt.

Today we learn (thanks to a heads up from First Showing), that The Hollywood Reporter is confirming both Hardy and Theron have entered into negotiations to star in Fury Road, with Hardy filling in for Mel Gibson as the titular role of Max Rockatansky and Theron as the female lead (does that mean she’s the new Tina Turner?). At this point, unless something wonky happens, Hardy and Theron will be the ones we see come release time.

It’s taken almost 10 years to get Fury Road off the ground and at one point, Mel Gibson was set to reprise his role, but let’s be honest – this isn’t the Mel Gibson of yesteryear. That Mel has been gone for some time now and even though he looks great in the new Edge of Darkness trailer, it’s just been too long since he strapped on the leather, wielded the sawed-off shotgun and got behind the wheel of his kick-ass Interceptor to run down bad guys.

Another reason Gibson couldn’t be Max, the story takes place shortly after Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome, which means even with a hefty helping of CGI reverse aging, Gibson couldn’t fit the part anymore. What I’m hoping doesn’t happen is for this movie to be ruined with CGI effects. For this movie to work, the effects absolutely must stay practical and stay away from CGI.  Miller went on Australian’s ABC News the week to talk about his film, Australia’s film industry. Miller also shows us a car that may or may not be the prototype (thanks to AICN for the pointing this video out.) This means Miller won’t change the car, which is good to know because it’s as iconic a vehicle as The A-Team van or the General Lee.

Watch the video below:

There haven’t been any other details released regarding the story but I’m sure as we get closer to a shooting date that will change. Fury Road will begin shooting next summer and has a good chance of returning to the Australian deserts.

What do you think about Tom Hardy replacing Mel Gibson as Max in Fury Road? Can he do the role proud?

Mad Max Fury Road is tentatively slated for a 2011 release.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter, Cinema Blend