Well, that was quick. We started the week by bringing you George Miller talking about the early progress of Mad Max 4, and now it seems that Miller has already found the guy to fill Mel Gibson's shoes. Ladies and gentlemen, put your hands together for the new Max Rockatansky, our very own Tom Hardy.
Yep, you read that right: Tom Hardy. We were surprised, too, but after a few moments of reflection it's an inspired choice. The Hollywood Reporter is, well, reporting that Hardy's turn in RocknRolla may have brought him to Miller's attention, but surely it was his turn as the eponymous Bronson. There Hardy demonstrated that considerable dangerous edge that Max should ideally have (which is not to imply that Max is a psychotic nutcase with a ludicrous moustache).
Still, Miller seemed to imply he would ideally prefer some homegrown Australian talent. But Hardy seems like he'd be a solid, not to say exciting, choice, and after knocking on the door of stardom for a while, this could be the role that finally sees him rip the damn handle off.
Intriguingly, Charlize Theron - who, with this and The Road, seems to have a thing for end-of-the-world flicks - is in talks to play the female lead.
Little is known about that role - and Max, dead missus aside, doesn't really do love interests, so fingers crossed that she's an ultra-doolally villainess - but THR also seems to have the inside skinny on some script details, confirming that this is a straight sequel and not a remake or a reboot, taking place shortly after Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome. And Fury Road is back in the running for the title.
Shooting is pencilled in for next summer, after a prolongued pre-production building all the cars to be smashed. This can't come soon enough.