“It’s a Good Day” says New #MadMax: Fury Road Int’l Trailer. Yeah, But For What?!

Tom Hardy, Mad Max Rockatansky, Mad Max: Fury Road,  movie, photo, trailer, Charlize Theron, George Miller

From the looks of this 67 seconds of hot, angry, sweaty, flaming mayhem…the answer is “to blow some shit up!”.

Warner Bros. has just released a new (and completely insane) Japanese trailer for this summer’s sure-to-be-blockbuster, Mad Max: Fury Road. And we thank them for it. Given the long road from inception to release that this film has traveled and is still traveling, the WB deserves kudos for not just keeping this in the front of moviegoers’ minds, but chomping at the proverbial bit.

Despite the fact that this clip is only a tad more than one-minute long, it not only compacts and condenses what was in the previous full-length trailer, it does provide some bits of new footage. How do they do that, you might well ask? By moving at the speed of sound and not wasting a nano-second of screen time on anything that isn’t racing, burning, screaming or better yet, exploding. There’s no room for flab in this post-apocalyptic wasteland.

Take a look:

Mad Mad: Fury Road is the fourth film of George Miller‘s Road Warrior/Mad Max franchise co-written and directed by Miller. The post-apocalyptic action film is set in the furthest reaches of our planet, in a stark desert landscape where humanity is broken, and most everyone is crazed fighting for the necessities of life. Within this world of fire and blood exist two rebels on the run who just might be able to restore order… There’s Max (Tom Hardy), a man of action and a man of few words, who seeks peace of mind following the loss of his wife and child in the aftermath of the chaos. And… Furiosa (Charlize Theron), a woman of action and a woman who believes her path to survival may be achieved if she can make it across the desert back to her childhood homeland.”

Mad Max: Fury Road with Nicholas Hoult, Zoë Kravitz, Rosie Huntington-Whitely, Riley Keough, Abbey Lee, Nathan Jones, and Hugh Keays-Byrne, takes over the world on May 13-15, 2015, depending on where you are in it. (A May 13 premiere in France suggests an appearance on the Croisette, no? The Cannes Film Festival also begins that day.)

Watch This: Will Mad Max: Fury Road Be Worth the Wait?

Mad Max: Fury Road, movie, poster, Tom Hardy, Charlize Theron, George Miller, trailer

All signs point to… HELL YES!

I won’t rehash yet again what a long, strange trip this film has taken from inception to completion. It’s been well-documented by myself and many, many others. What I will say, after finally seeing the first full-length trailer for “Mastermind” George Miller‘s Mad Max reboot, is that it is my belief that this is Max Rockatansky as Miller had always envisioned. Technology (and his budget) has finally caught up to that vision.

Take a look:

There does not appear to be anything, at least in this first 2 1/2 min. bit of Fury Road, that would be out of place in the Mad Max canon, but it all still manages to push the boundaries. Everyone is still filthy; gasoline is still worth more than a life; boys still like to play with motorized toys; rebels still wear makeup like refugees from a Mexican Day-of-the-Dead fiesta and lots of stuff still gets blowed up. But for all of this throw-back appeal, it still manages to look fresh. It’s gritty and yet vibrant.


An apocalyptic story set in the furthest reaches of our planet, in a stark desert landscape where humanity is broken, and almost everyone is crazed fighting for the necessities of life. Within this world exist two rebels on the run who just might be able to restore order. There’s Max, a man of action and a man of few words, who seeks peace of mind following the loss of his wife and child in the aftermath of the chaos. And Furiosa, a woman of action and a woman who believes her path to survival may be achieved if she can make it across the desert back to her childhood homeland.

Mad Max: Fury Road with Tom Hardy as Max, Charlize Theron as Imperator Furiosa, Nicholas Hoult as Nux, Zoë Kravitz as Toast, Rosie Huntington-Whitely as Splendid, Hugh Keays-Byrne as Immortan Joe, Nathan Jones as Rictus Erectus, and Riley Keough as Capable opens in the US and the UK on May 15, 2015.

Tom Hardy’s World is Fire and Blood Where Only the Mad Survive

Mad Max: Fury Road, Tom Hardy, Charlize Theron, George Miller, poster, movie

1st poster for Mad Max: Fury Road

Ah Comic Con. That Disneyland/Mecca/Nirvana for pop culture junkies of all shapes, sizes, colors and creeds, has, thanks to  Warner Brothers and Village Roadshow, yielded more treasure. Right on the heels of this morning’s four new character posters (and last week’s first official poster – seen above), today, at long last, we have our first look at some actual footage from George Miller’s Mad Max: Fury Road with Tom Hardy taking over from Mel Gibson (complete with Aussie accent, it would seem). It’s not a full-blown trailer, but it is a teaser to be sure.

Fury Road is the fourth film in the franchise, a sequel/reboot hybrid of Miller’s own films, the post-apocalyptic sci-fi classics, The Road Warrior and Mad Max. The movie also stars Charlize Theron, Nicholas Hoult, Zoë Kravitz, Riley Keough, Hugh Keays-Byrne, and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, most of whom can be at least glimpsed in the teaser.

Peep this:

For all of the delays, for reasons ranging from financing, to scheduling to bad weather, (including having to find a new location when said weather turned the Australian outback green and lush) and reshoots, this an impressive first look. Hey naysayers, this might actually be GOOD!

In fact, it would appear that 1. This thing is going to kick all kinds of ass and 2. Hardy is going to have no trouble winning over the skeptical legions of die-hard Mad Max fans. If they won’t exactly forget Mel Gibson, they will at least be able to accept Hardy as Max.

Mad Max: Fury Road is set to be released on May 15, 2015, a date which will, no doubt be etched into your memory over the course of the next ten months.

So? Whaddya think? Are you excited or what?


What I Missed on My Summer Vacation: Part 2 – Tom Hardy Edition

Movie, Poster, Michael Roskam, The Drop, Tom Hardy, James Gandolfini, Noomi Rapace

International Poster for Michael Roskam’s The Drop with Tom Hardy, James Gandolfini and Noomi Rapace

1. The Drop International Trailer, Poster and New Images

The Drop is, without a doubt, on the top of my “must see” list for the remainder of 2014. I probably made that clear when I posted the first trailer. This just ticks too many boxes for me: Tom Hardy, Dennis Lehane, James Gandolfini, Matthias Schoenarts (working for his Bullhead director, Michaël Roskam), puppies, wise guys… I could do The Muttley right now and I haven’t even seen it. (I still think someone needs to provide a logical explanation as to why the title was changed from Animal Rescue – which was the title of Dennis Lehane’s short story upon which it’s based. Seriously, we can’t complain that our society is collectively losing brain cells like a balloon with a slow leak, and continue to pander to the lowest common denominator. End rant.)

Bob Saginowski (Hardy) finds himself at the center of a robbery gone awry and entwined in an investigation that digs deep into the neighborhood’s past where friends, families, and foes all work together to make a living – no matter the cost.

If you haven’t yet made up your mind about this one, take a look at the international version of the trailer. It’s longer and definitely darker than the domestic version, yet provides a clearer picture of what we can expect.

Certainly it appears that The Drop is classic Lehane, in which the protagonist is attempting to turn his life around even as his past comes back to bite him in the ass. As a Lehane fan, there is much I can deduce about the plot from that statement alone, but I don’t want to peer too closely.
I think that I can say with some confidence that James Gandolfini will be nominated for more posthumous awards (for the final time as this was, unfortunately, his last film), Schoennarts and Roskam will be firmly planted on the American map and Tom Hardy and Noomi Rapace are brilliant. We have to wait until September to find out if I’m right or full of something.

Mad Max: Fury Road, movie, photo, Tom Hardy

Tom Hardy as Max Rockatansky in Mad Max: Fury Road

2. Mad Max: Fury Road New Images and Official Synopsis

I’m not going to run down all of the drama surrounding the production of Mad Max: Fury Road. I’ve been talking about it for years and you can read it all here.

Let’s focus on the good news that surfaced last week, namely the new images of Tom Hardy as Max and the first official images (via EW) of Charlize Theron as Furiosa.
The official synopsis of the film gives us some insight into her character:

Mad Max: Fury Road is an apocalyptic story set in the furthest reaches of our planet, in a stark desert landscape where humanity is broken, and most everyone is crazed, fighting for the necessities of life. Within this world exist two rebels on the run who just might be able to restore order. There’s Max, a man of action and a man of few words, who seeks peace of mind following the loss of his wife and child in the aftermath of the chaos. And Furiosa, a woman of action and a woman who believes her path to survival may be achieved if she can make it across the desert back to her childhood homeland.

I’m going to go out on a limb and say that Fury Road must be where these two characters and their paths converge.
The rest of the cast includes Nicholas Hoult, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Zoë Kravitz, Riley Keough and Josh Helman. The movie’s release has actually been moved up (from its Summer 2015 date, which was moved back from its original date…oh who can keep up?) to May 15, 2015 – which indicates some faith in its ability to kick-off the summer blockbuster season – so it’s still early yet for a trailer. I’d bet on some sort of footage, be it a full trailer, just a teaser or a clip, to come out of Comic Con later this month.  I’m keeping my eyes peeled in any case, because I can’t wait.

Lest there be any confusion, this isn’t a Tom Hardy fan blog (any more than it’s a Gerard Butler or Michael Fassbender blog), but it is my blog and so I write about the things (and the people) that interest me. One of the people that has fascinated me for the last (nearly) six years, has been one Edward Thomas Hardy. This isn’t the time to go into his curriculum vitae, as I’ve discussed it many, many times in the past and it can all be found here if you’re interested.
I have written about him so often, in just the past year alone, because Tom Hardy is everywhere lately. He’s achieved that level of fame that means there are camera crews stalking his film sets, but more than that, it seems that rarely a week goes by without the announcement of another film project. If the man makes every movie to which he’s attached at this moment, back to back without a break, the 36 year old Hardy won’t have to sign on for anything else until he’s well into his forties.
Which brings me to the news that just yesterday, Hardy’s reps formally confirmed what we’d heard rumors of about two months ago, that he will reteam with his Inception costar, Leonardo DiCaprio for Alejandro González Iñárritu’s The Revenant. The director wrote the screenplay with Mark L. Smith (Vacancy, The Hole), based on the book by Michael Punke. It’s a thriller set in the 1820s about “a man called Hugh Glass (DiCaprio), a fur trapper, who treks 3,000 miles of uncharted American wilderness to get revenge on the two men who left him for dead following a bear attack”.
Will Poulter (best known in the US for We’re the Millers, won the EE Rising Star Award at this year’s BAFTAs) has already signed on. Filming is set to begin this September, which makes me wonder what Hardy has dropped to make room for this film, although no announcements to that effect have been made. The Revenant has been tentatively scheduled for release sometime in the fall of 2015.

Much more to come on this one, as well as Child 44, also due this year, Legend, currently filming, as well as Rocketman and Kathryn Bigelow’s The True American, start dates to be announced.

Next Year’s a Locke for Tom Hardy – updated

(Yeah, yeah, you think it’s easy comin’ up with a clever title every time? You try it.)

Tom Hardy, Locke, movie

I’ve been trying to say what I wanted to say about both Tom Hardy and Locke for over a week now. Time to get this down before the movie comes out and renders this moot.

It has been far too long, in my humble opinion, since Tom Hardy has been on the big screen. He hasn’t had a movie in the theaters since last summer’s Lawless. Of course that was the last of three films released in 2012: First there was This Means War (oh well, every actor needs one of these on their resume. He’s not the first to be the best thing about ridiculous movie) which was followed by a little film called The Dark Knight Rises.

While I (along with legions of others) may have missed his face (and that mouth….where was I? Oh yeah. Sorry), I know that he’s been hard at work on several film projects (as well as a few humanitarian efforts). I could say that I believe that 2014 will be a HUGE year for Hardy, but I’ve had that thought before.

He’s been “on the verge” for a long time. I’ve been a fan since 2008’s Rocknrolla, but I really thought that after the rest of the world discovered him in Inception in 2010, that Warrior in 2011 was going to make him a household name. Wrong. It took a superhero flick in which his face was covered for all but 3 seconds of screen time to do that. As usual, I’m ambivalent about an actor I’ve long considered a “hidden jewel” gaining the popularity they deserve. Sometimes, maybe even often, an actor does his best work before the glare of the spotlight finds him and he becomes a tabloid regular. On the other hand, if more people had known who he was and had subsequently gone to see Warrior, he may not have been robbed of the awards-season attention he deserved. His Tommy Conlon breaks my heart every time I see it.

But I digress. 2014 will finally see the long awaited release of George Miller’s much delayed Mad Max reboot, Fury Road which also stars Charlize Theron, Nicholas Hoult, and a few stick bugs  Rosie Huntington-Whitely, Abby Lee and Riley Keough. At least that’s what we’re still being told. As of this writing, the movie has several weeks of reshoots scheduled for November.

“Not a good sign” you say? True, there have been nothing but bad omens surrounding this project since its first inception way back in 1985.  Mad Max: Fury Road was originally conceived to be the fourth Mad Max flick for Mel Gibson. For myriad reasons, too many to list here, including a couple of wars, that obviously didn’t happen. There was even talk of doing it as an animated film featuring Gibson’s voice. Again, no go. Writer/director Miller persevered, however, and reconfigured it as a reboot, eventually casting Hardy in 2010

The plague of production problems continued. When cameras were finally set to roll in 2011 in the Australian outback, unseasonable and heavy rains turned the area into the Garden of Eden instead of the “back of beyond” and new locations had to be secured. In the meantime the cast scattered to do other projects. When they finally got back together and cameras rolled in mid 2012, the film faced numerous shutdowns, budget over-runs (Warner Brothers sent suits to Africa to watchdog Miller), and charges from the Namibian government that the production permanently damaged indigenous plant life. Filming itself was physically grueling and took a toll on Hardy and Theron.  Now they’re facing nearly a month more of African filming.

There are conflicting reports as to whether these are actually “reshoots” or a planned sequence they were unable to get for various reasons the first time around.

That said, much like January and February release dates, reshoots aren’t necessarily the kiss of death that they once were. (World War Z springs to mind, since it’s still in theaters, as an example of another troubled production; one that turned out extremely well.) So if the movie is good, we may never know and no one will care. If it isn’t, then we can add it to the list of reasons why the movie failed.

Tom Hardy, Mad Max Fury Road, movie

source: AICN

In addition to the much ballyhooed Mad Max: Fury Road, 2014 will see not one, but two Tom Hardy films costarring Noomi Rapace.

Animal Rescue, written by Dennis Lehane from his own short story, is the English-language debut of Bullhead director Michael Roskam, about a lost pit bull, a wannabe scam artist, and a murder, (the cast also includes Bullhead star Matthias Schoenaerts and the late James Gandolfini in his final film), as well as the currently filming Child 44 from the novel by Tom Rob Smith. Set in the USSR during the Stalin-era, Hardy plays a disgraced MGB (Ministry for State Security – which preceded the KGB) agent sent to investigate a series of child murders in a country where crimes of this sort “did not exist”. He soon begins to connect the case with top party leadership. That one is directed by Daniel Espinosa who made his English debut with last year’s Safe House (Denzel Washington, Ryan Reynolds) but is best known in his native Sweden for Snabba Cash (Easy Money) with Joel “Robocop” Kinnaman. It also reteams Hardy with Gary Oldman.

At last we come to the film that, although it will more than likely see release next year, has actually debuted this year- last week in fact, at the Venice Film Festival.  Locke is a thriller that unfolds in “real time”, written and directed by Steven Knight and exec. produced by Joe Wright (director of Atonement, Anna Karenina etc) . Knight made his directorial debut with Redemption (original title Hummingbird) with Jason Statham (which got only a token release back in June here in the US, but hits DVD on September 24), but he’s also the writer responsible for the just released (and entertaining, but ultimately forgettable political thriller) Closed Circuit with Rebecca Hall and Eric Bana as well as two of my favorite movies of the past few years, Eastern Promises (dir. by David Cronenberg starring Viggo Mortensen) and Dirty Pretty Things (with Chiwitel Ejiofor and Audrey Tautou, dir. by  Stephen Frears).

Just prior to doing the limbo under the radar and straight into Venice,  a first clip (not really a trailer – which you can see below) premiered late last month for Locke. Most people were probably wondering why they’d never heard of it. One reason? Knight’s spare, confined space drama (the action in the film never leaves the car and Hardy is in every frame), was shot over the course of just eight nights this past February.

Video removed because it “no longer exists”

“Based on an original screenplay from Knight, LOCKE is the story of one man’s life unraveling in a tension-fueled ninety minute race against time. Ivan Locke (Tom Hardy) has the perfect family, his dream job, and tomorrow should be the crowning moment of his career. But one phone call will force him to make a decision that will put it all on the line.”**

There are other actors credited, including Ruth Wilson (The Lone Ranger, “Luther”), Olivia Colman (Tyrannosaur, “Broadchurch”), Ben Daniels (“Law & Order: UK”, “House of Cards”), and Tom Holland (The Impossible), but they don’t get screen time. Only their voices will be heard. For the eight nights of filming, Hardy drove through and around London while the other the actors (stationed in a hotel) placed calls to his cell phone.

Conceived in November, filmed by February, and despite the fact that it was made for about $2 million and by seasoned professionals, this sounds a lot like guerilla filmmaking. Maybe Knight has established a new genre. Maybe Hardy and company are ‘upscale urban guerillas’.  Or not. I’m all in for this in any case. It will probably get a UK theatrical release via Lionsgate. Hopefully we’ll get to see it on this side of the ocean, if only on VOD.

Hardy also has six other announced titles in various stages of production, so eventually we will get to see him again in something. In the meantime maybe BBCAmerica will let us watch “Poaching Wars”. You could always catch up with some of Hardy’s earlier work like Bronson, Sweeney Todd (not the musical) or “Stuart: A Life Backwards” (if you can find it) or the BBC miniseries “The Virgin Queen” and “Oliver Twist” or even better, go rewatch Rocknrolla or Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy again. If all else fails, and you really need a fix, there’s always This Means War. You can find the good parts on YouTube.

Here’s a clip of Tom (an Audi spokesman since 2008) driving another car and having a ball doing it:

(Frankly he could be driving a Big Wheel as long as he narrates the advert)

UPDATE 9/7/13: The North American distribution rights to Locke have just been acquired by A24 in the first major deal of the Toronto International Film Festival.

** IM Global/Anthem Press release from Berlin Film Festival, February 7, 2013