No official announcement has been made about the role, but Hardy spoke exclusively with MTV about his possible appearance in the film – and he seems to be as uncertain (or unforthcoming) about the details of the film (which is due to shoot down-under next year) as director George Miller and Mel Gibson.
MTV’s Josh Horowitz quizzed the actor about the film and Hardy stated that he was far from a lock for the film:
"George hasn't actually confirmed that. It’s strongly coming in my direction. I would be preparing for that role."
When asked how he’d deal with playing such an iconic character he replied:
“The Mad Max figure is a big figure, and I have to get my head around that.”
Hardy went on to say:
Hardy remains hopeful that the role is his, saying:
"If I get offered it and George really wants to go with me, then George will tell me exactly what he wants to do and we'll work together on the floor to create what it is that he wants to achieve. And I hope I can get that done for him."
Now, while I’ve said this a million times, I believe that there is still a slight chance that Mel Gibson could return to the role of Max in Miller's action epic. The budget of Fury Road is set at over $100 million and I feel that in this financial climate, Warner Bros. would be hesitant to pony up that sort of cash with Hardy in the lead – even with Charlize Theron in a supporting role.
Hardy also said in the interview that when he tested for the film he did so without a script and a character – a sure sign that Miller could be casting for different parts, with the option of getting a replacement Max if Gibson turns him down again. Even if Gibson accepts, Hardy could end up with a meaty supporting role, much like when Cillian Murphy came down to the last round of Batman auditions for Christopher Nolan's Batman Begins before Christian Bale got the title - Murphy was then cast as The Scarecrow.
"The audition process had nothing to do with Max and nothing to do with the story or the script. It was unorthodox to the point where actually I could have been auditioning for anything. It was an anonymous read. I haven't actually gotten into the conversation at all about Max."
The MTV interview concludes with Hardy stating:
In my opinion it at least looks like the studio is pulling for Gibson in the role and that Miller is just getting ready in case the aging icon rejects the part.
Heck, it could even be that Hardy is overly optimistic about his chances of landing the role and that Miller may have him in mind for a different character and not Mad Max.
What do you guys make of all this?