Warner Bros. publicly unveiled the first footage from Mad Max: Fury Road at SDCC and the reactions coming out of Hall H are ecstatically positive. A set of posters were also released shortly after, and it's looking like George Miller's apocalyptic saga is setting out to redefine car-chases in movies.
It’s been 35 years since the Aussie filmmaker started the franchise with Mel Gibson as the iconic post-apocalyptic road warrior, the cult fave who last hit screens in 1985′s Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome, a role which is now being played by Tom Hardy in Fury Road. This is not so much a prequel or sequel or even a reboot. Think of Mad Max: Fury Road as a tale told by camp-fire. The hero could essentially look like anyone, as long as a few key-characteristics are left intact. Director George Miller described the film as being right in line with his three previous Max entries — “a very simple allegory, almost a Western on wheels.”
The footage that was shown involved a bit of the film’s set-up. It starts off with a voice-over saying “My name is Max, my world is fire and blood.” He’s is captured and tortured by a band of monstrous renegade thugs. Max is adorned with a metal mask and mounted on the front of a vicious looking vehicle. From there, the villain of the film is revealed to be Immortan Joe, a scary-looking Hugh Keays-Byrne (who played “The Toecutter” in Mad Max in 1979) wearing a skull-like face mask. The footage shifts into overdrive as the chase begins, and we get a few moments with Charlize Theron’s character Furiosa.
The chase footage set the audience ablaze. All the sights and sounds were on full-display as cars were flipped, exploded and decimated by both man-made and natural disasters. Many are commenting that the IMAX screen would be the most ideal way to truly experience Mad Max: Fury Road. Shortly after the panel wrapped, media and general Hall H’ers took to twitter and social media to convey their enthusiasm to the awesome footage:
Mad Max: Fury Road looks astonishing. Vehicular mayhem on a scale we've never seen before. It's like the best Top Gear special ever made.
— Empire Magazine (@empiremagazine) July 26, 2014
#SDCC2014 Mad Max Fury Road footage was CRAZY. "Mad" you might say… Big, freaky, violent, AWESOME.
— Screen Rant (@screenrant) July 26, 2014
It's not just hype – the Mad Max: Fury Road footage looks phenomenal, it has bumped to the top of my most anticipated. Wait till you see it.
— Alex Billington (@firstshowing) July 26, 2014
This film has so little dialogue that Miller didn’t even write a script for the movie. Rather, he did a series of 3500 storyboards to map the film out visually. “A lot of time has passed. Technology has changed. It was an interesting thing to do. Crazy, but interesting,” said Miller, who went on saying, “Even if it’s in the future, we have gone back to the more elemental behaviors. More medieval. The setting is very spare and clear.”
Shortly after the panel, a series of character posters were released online. They show both Max and Furiosa played by Tom Hardy and Charlize Theron, as well as Nicholas Hoult’s Nux, and the above mentioned Hugh Keays-Byrne as Immortan Joe. Check them out below:
After Hall H was all abuzz with news of Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice footage, attendees were incredibly surprised by what Miller brought to the table. Much of the footage as described above doesn’t give it the respect it deserves. Miller has crafted an incredible visual narrative, relying more on pure-cinema techniques that made his original Mad Max movies (especially The Road Warrior) so incredibly cinematic as staples of action films.
Mad Max: Fury Road hits theaters on May 15th, 2015.
Images: Warner Bros.