It's been a quarter of a century since we last saw Mad Max on the big screen, and although it's starting to feel like director George Miller is dangling Mad Max: Fury Road in front of us like a carrot on a stick, the project continues to crawl forward. Despite the latest set of delays, Miller is still making progress rounding out the film's cast.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Riley Keough is in talks to star as one of the "Five Wives" - a group of women who need Max's protection from "the bad guys." While incredibly vague, it's the only confirmed detail we have regarding the movie's plot so far.
It was previously reported that Five Wives was the name of Zoe Kravtiz's character, but now we know it refers to their convoy and not an individual. In addition to Kravitz, the other Wives already cast include Adelaide Clemens and... Teresa Palmer?
THR indicates that Palmer is back onboard Mad Max: Fury Road, even though the actress recently claimed she had never been involved with it . It's possible THR isn't up to date about Palmer's status, but it's also possible that with production now starting several months later than originally planned, there's no longer a scheduling conflict.
Evidently it was Palmer's involvement with D.J. Caruso's I Am Number Four that caused her departure - but with that film currently in production, it potentially leaves Palmer free for Fury Road. As this story unfolds, I'm sure her reps will be quick to confirm or deny her involvement so we'll be sure to keep you updated.
Keough, the granddaughter of Elvis Presley, made her film debut earlier this year in The Runaways and has two releases scheduled for next year: Lance Daly's The Good Doctor - in which she appears opposite Orlando Bloom - and Jack and Diane, the indie werewolf romance starring Jena Malone, Juno Temple, and Kylie Minogue.
Miller remains extremely devoted to the highly anticipated and long-delayed fourth installment in his Mad Max franchise. Although it's had an excruciatingly long trip through development hell and been on our radars for some time, we still know very little about the premise or how it relates to the first three films. It seems like every new piece of information contradicts the last.
THR mentions that the film is set a short time after Beyond Thunderdome and while that was almost certainly the plan at one point, recent reports indicate that Miller may actually be shooting two new Mad Max films back-to-back with the intention of rebooting the series. When Tom Hardy discussed his approach to the character, his comments suggested a brand new interpretation rather than a continuation from where we last saw the character.
Furthermore (and I may be reading too much into this), Max's Interceptor was destroyed in The Road Warrior and completely absent in Beyond Thunderdome. Yet we know it will be in the new film, which raises some questions about continuity.
Even with a new actor playing Max, I'm still hoping they leave the exact details of how Mad Max: Fury Road fits into the franchise somewhat ambiguous. A film that works as a sequel and a reboot simultaneously seems preferable to any sort of definitive declaration.
Although there have been numerous false starts over the years, I'm really hoping something materializes this time. Miller was unbelievably close to shooting once before, until things fell apart at the last minute and put the project on the back-burner for another decade. I'm not sure Mad Max: Fury Road would survive a similar setback.
Source: The Hollywood Reporter.