Who will Anya Taylor-Joy play in the Mad Max spin-off?


The Mad Max spinoff featuring the character Imperator Furiosa might become a prequel starring Anya Taylor-Joy.

There’s been talk of a Mad Max spinoff for several years now. Since the release of Mad Max: Fury Road, the insanely successful sequel/reboot of the Mad Max films referred to as a “revisiting” of the franchise, writer and director George Miller has been itching to continue the story with a world of spin-offs. He also has some regular sequels lined up, but this was back in 2015. Five years have passed and there’s been almost no development on any of these promised features, until now.

Despite featuring central character Max Rockatansky, the real star of Fury Road was war captain Imperator Furiosa played by Charlize Theron. She came into the film full of mystery with a shaved head, one arm and a presence so powerful I often forgot that Tom Hardy (Max) was standing right there.

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Since the introduction to the character, Miller has become borderline obsessed with making a film solely focused on her. There was a comic miniseries published in 2015 that attempted to explore her backstory but spent more time explaining her relationship with The Five Wives instead. Information that most people didn’t need a comic to already guess.

The film about Furiosa was intended to be a sequel to Fury Road, however, a new update reveals that the upcoming film could actually be a prequel about the war captain when she was young. Mad Max: Furiosa will reportedly depict what Theron’s character was doing years before meeting Max Rockatansky, and Miller is looking for a younger actress to take on the role.

On account of the quarantine, Miller has been “Skype-testing” a number of actresses, and the name that he’s expressed interest in is that of 23-year-old Anya Taylor-Joy. People might know her from the 2015 horror film The Witch and M. Night Shyamalan’s thriller, Split. If this is a prequel and a rising young actress such as Joy has been cast, I say it’s likely that she might be our new Furiosa. George Miller hopes to start filming sometime in 2021.

PARIS, FRANCE – MARCH 03: Anya Taylor-Joy attends the Miu Miu show as part of the Paris Fashion Week Womenswear Fall/Winter 2020/2021 on March 03, 2020 in Paris, France. (Photo by Jacopo Raule/Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE – MARCH 03: Anya Taylor-Joy attends the Miu Miu show as part of the Paris Fashion Week Womenswear Fall/Winter 2020/2021 on March 03, 2020 in Paris, France. (Photo by Jacopo Raule/Getty Images) /

Does this mean Theron is finished with the franchise? The question of whether or not she’ll appear in additional Mad Max films has been a mystery for a while. One minute she says she’ll return and the next minute she shrugs her shoulders with a “who knows” gesture. In truth, she doesn’t know, nor does anyone else. No one but Miller.

When The Wasteland allegedly entered production in 2019, there was some talk about Theron’s character making a cameo. In an interview with Variety, Theron shared her excitement to return to the franchise while confirming that Miller has two finished scripts that provide backstories for Furiosa and other characters as well.

"There were three scripts. They were written as back stories to Max’s character and to Furiosa’s character. But at the end of the day, this thing lives and breathes with [director] George [Miller]. I think Warner Bros. knows that. We are all waiting for him to show us the way."

However, Theron hasn’t signed on for The Wasteland and Miller himself confirmed that the film will not feature Furiosa. So, to clarify, there are two films currently in development: The Wasteland and Furiosa. One is the sequel to Fury Road that’s without Theron or Furiosa and the other is, supposedly, a prequel that will be all about Furiosa. Okay, got it.

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Mad Max: Furiosa isn’t thought to start production until 2021 but until the quarantine lets up and COVID-19 slows down, there’s a chance that it could take longer.