“What Is This?”: Anya Taylor-Joy and Chris Hemsworth Recall First Mad Max Memory


Mad Max has really made its mark on Australian culture over the past 45 years. It all started back in 1979 with Mel Gibson leading the charge. Since then, George Miller has been the brains behind four more adrenaline-packed films, the latest being Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga. This one takes us back before the events of Mad Max: Fury Road to uncover the backstory of the iconic character first portrayed by Charlize Theron. It’s safe to say that anticipation for Furiosa is high, as Mad Max: Fury Road was nominated for 10 Academy Awards in 2016, and took home six wins.

In Furiosa, Anya Taylor-Joy (The Menu) steps into the shoes of the title character, facing off against Aussie star Chris Hemsworth, who’s taking on a rare villainous role as Dementus. The story dives into Furiosa’s early days to shed light on the tough desert warrior we met in Fury Road.

Warner Bros.

Chris Hemsworth and Anya Taylor-Joy’s First Memory of Mad Max

POPSUGAR Australia sat down with Anya and Chris to chat all things Mad Max, including their first memory of the franchise. For Chris, the Mad Max saga isn’t just about the films; it’s intertwined with cherished memories of his upbringing.

“I watched them with my dad,” he recalled. “My dad used to race motorbikes and knew a lot of the stunt riders from the original film. George Miller showed us a photo with my dad and a group of those guys that were in the film and the dog that was in the first film.”

He added: “It’s all come full-circle, that sort of nostalgia to it and the memories, it immediately takes me back to my childhood.”

Related: Mad Max Fans Rejoice: All You Need to Know About the New Furiosa Movie

Meanwhile, for Anya, the franchise was a new discovery, but one that left an indelible mark.

“I went to see Fury Road in the cinema, and it was such a mind-blowing experience,” she said.

“I remember standing up and clapping at the end of the film because I was like, ‘woah, what is this?’. Then, obviously, when I got the job, I had the absolute thrill and pleasure of getting to know all of these movies and then getting to visit the places they actually filmed them and getting to shoot there as well. It was extraordinary.”


Anya on the “Challenging” Action Scenes

Furiosa is a massive production, reportedly the largest film ever shot in Australia with a budget of over $400 million. It’s a thrilling addition to the Mad Max franchise and boasts some of the most breathtaking stunts yet. One chase scene alone took 78 days to film and involved “200 stunt performers”. But for Anya, the challenge was part of the thrill.

“If it wasn’t hard to film I personally would’ve felt cheated,” she admitted.

“I went into this knowing that it was going to be intense and that’s what I wanted. I think everybody on set felt the exact same way. When you finish off these big set pieces, that’s so many performers, that’s so many vehicles going on, you just get this absolute thrill of being part of a fully realised world and you’re creating this living, breathing thing.”

Who’s Most Likely to Survive the Wastelands IRL?

In the spirit of adventure, we delved into a hypothetical: who, out of the two of them, would stand the best chance of thriving in a real-life dystopian scenario?

“Anya,” Chris declared with no hesitation in his voice. But Anya paused, her response tinged with thoughtful reflection.

“My only issue, and genuinely I believe this, is that I don’t know if I could kill an animal for food. I’m sure that I would get to that point, but I don’t know how emaciated I would be by the time I’d get there.”


“My pet lamb was cooked and that made it very real for me, very quickly.”

In the midst of this introspection, Chris injected a bit of humour as he envisioned their roles as a post-apocalyptic duo.

“We’d make a great team,” Chris laughed. “I’d send Anya out as bait, she’d play the innocent, and then [BAM]!” His hands clapped together. “And I’d be like, ‘Go Anya, yes!’”

Furiosa hits cinemas on May 23. You can book your tickets here.

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