George Miller has been working on a new Mad Max film for almost a decade and old Max himself, Mel Gibson, was set to return in Mad Max 4: Fury Road in 2002 when the war in Iraq scuttled the project. Since then, Gibson has passed on the role stating that he is too old to play the character.
Miller has pondered many different possibilities for the future of the franchise, ranging from recasting the part, to making the next installment in the series an animated film.
Now it would appear that Miller has decided to return to the live action format with The Hurt Locker star, Jeremy Renner, as a possible candidate for the lead role of Mad Max.
In an interview with The Modesto Bee about Kathryn Bigelow's latest critically-acclaimed movie, The Hurt Locker, Renner revealed some details on his upcoming projects including a starring role in Ben Affleck's forthcoming The Town and the possibility of him doing Mad Max next summer.
"I'm also fighting to do the new Mad Max film with George Miller. That might be next summer. I'm screen-testing and meeting George Miller."
Now, his words aren't confirmation that he's up for the title role of Mad Max, but it's very likely and a fair assumption that he's in the running to be stepping into Mel Gibson's leathers.
This is much better news than Miller making an animated Mad Max film - which I don't think would do the franchise any justice. However, I really do feel that the character of Max Rockatansky is an iconic Mel Gibson role and it will be very difficult to see another actor play the Road Warrior.
All of this sounds like the film is in the very early stages of production and George Miller is currently working on Happy Feet 2, so a lot could change over the course of the next year. Miller was also working furiously on the ill-fated Justice League movie and he seemed pretty adamant that he'd get that project up and running again. This means that it could be a while before seeing Mad Max on the silver screen again.
This news also doesn't mean that Renner has the part - it's only a screen test and another actor could end up getting the role. That being said, Renner's star profile is continuing to grow and there's a lot of positive buzz surrounding his recent performance in The Hurt Locker which will definitely help his chances. He's also an experienced bad-ass in most of his roles, ranging from the self-sacrificing soldier in 28 Weeks Later, to the cop-turned-villain opposite of Colin Farrell in S.W.A.T.
It is unknown at this point what the storyline for the new film would be. Is it a remake of the original film? Or is it just a continuation of Max's adventures as he travels through the wastelands?
With a bit of luck, Miller and Gibson will have a few more discussions about Mad Max 4 and realize that it might be fun if they both return to the post-apocalyptic Australian Outback.
What do you think of the future of Mad Max?
More when we get it.
Source: Modesto Bee Via Ain't It Cool News