Twenty-seven years have passed since the release Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome. In the time since that last installment of George Miller's iconic action series, the director has struggled off and on to get a fourth chapter in the saga into production. Fortunately for fans of the prototypical post-apocalyptic epic, Mad Max: Fury Road began filming in Australia several months ago.
Though images of the set, costumes, and vehicles of Fury Road have made their way onto the Internet, we have yet to see the film's titular hero...(possibly) until now. An autographed copy of a promotional photograph has surfaced – an image of actor Tom Hardy (Splinter Cell) stepping into the role that once made Mel Gibson an international star.
Ain't It Cool has posted the first confirmed photograph of Tom Hardy as wasteland warrior Max Rockatansky. Along with the image of Hardy, the site shared a promotional image of one of Mad Max: Fury Road's armored vehicles, signed by multiple members of the cast. You can look at both of these below.
CLICK FOR FULL SIZE
For a series known for its delightfully over-the-top costume design, Max's appearance in the above photo is rather sedate. Hardy's appearance brings to mind more modern survivalist fare such as The Road or The Book of Eli rather than previous Mad Max movies.
That said, the quality of the image is not terribly good, and shot at such an angle that we don't get a full view of the costuming. Though we can't see it, it's fairly certain that Hardy is wearing the iconic leg-brace and shotgun holster from The Road Warrior. At the very least, he looks the part of a hardened desert wanderer, harried and exhausted.
In addition, previous set photos have confirmed that the overall aesthetic of Mad Max: Fury Road will definitely be more in line with the over-the-top imagery of Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome: Skin-masks, wrist-blades, and crazy armor are all in the cards for the fourth installment of the series.
Additionally, a single promotional shot does not do justice to a film's-worth of acting and imagery. Despite the brief glimpse of his appearance, whether Tom Hardy will be able to step comfortably into the boots of one of cult cinema's greatest heroes is still unknown. Hardy has proven himself an adept and adaptable actor in the last few years; at this point, his version of Max deserves cautious optimism.
Mad Max: Fury Road is currently set to crash into cinemas late in 2013.
Source: Ain't It Cool