Mad Max: Fury Road was arguably THE MOVIE of 2015. We named it our favorite film of 2015 and it’s easy to get excited about George Miller’s follow-up Mad Mad: The Wasteland.
While all signs point to Charlize Theron‘s Imperator Furiosa being absent from this next film, Tom Hardy is set to reprise his role as Max and it’s fun to speculate on who he might share a screen with.
1. Lee Pace
After a somewhat underwhelming parts in The Hobbit and Guardians of the Galaxy, Lee Pace needs a win – and while the aforementioned performances aren’t award-winning, they do demonstrate his willingness to utterly commit to a role. It’d be fascinating then to see what Pace would bring to a potentially villainous role in Mad Max: The Wasteland.
Though previous villains in the series have emphasized physical presence, it’s easy envision an actor like Lee Pace bringing a more cold sort of intensity to the wasteland. It’s easy to imagine him bringing to life a character worthy of sharing a screen with Tom Hardy‘s Max.
2. Ronda Rousey
With Mad Max: Fury Road George Miller set a benchmark for the portrayal of women in action films. Charlize Theron brought a strong feminist hero to the screen that we could root for and relate to, a person with troubles but also the strength of will to fight for what is right. To add to that was her physical strength and ability to embody the term “badass”.
Even though Ronda Rousey has done a handful of films I feel like she could be a great actor to bring into the fold. Perhaps she could play the hired muscle of our Gary Oldman villain? Or a rogue warrior from the female gangs, now eking out a living in the Wastelands as a smuggler?
3. Travis Fimmel
Aussie actor Travis Fimmel is a wildcard choice, but knowing that George Miller likes to cast his actors as those who can play strong both physically but also strong willed I think Fimmel is a great fit. He’s been getting consistently rave reviews for his portrayal of Ragnar Lothbrok on Vikings, and we’ll soon see him on our big screens in fantasy game to film adaptation Warcraft.
Both of these roles are also physically challenging so we know he can pull off fight and stunt scenes like a pro. Ideally I’d like to see him start off as a potential adversary for Tom Hardy’s Max, only to then join forces with Max out of necessity.
4. Danai Gurira
Ever since her turn as Michonne on The Walking Dead, I’ve always felt like Gurira was a natural badass and action hero who somehow fell out of a completely adventure into AMC’s zombie-drama. The exaggerated cacophony of hyper-violence that is George Miller’s Mad Max series seems like a natural place to find her.
Given Miller has all-but-confirmed that Charlize Theron‘s Furiosa won’t be making a return in Mad Max: The Wasteland, she’s got just the right post-apocalyptic survivor chops to fill the hole left by her absence, as well as bring further diversity to the cast.
5. Gary Oldman
Ideally I’d like to see Gary Oldman play a villain in the Mad Max universe. George Miller’s villains always have a hint of undertone to them, that they are made up of many layers and could never be considered one dimensional.
Oldman has the acting calibre and chops to be able to bring a nuanced villain to life. I’m thinking something similar to his role in The Fifth Element as Jean Baptiste Zorg, someone who is slightly uhinged, a clever manipulator and obsessed with power.
6. Margot Robbie
Though it feels like we are fast-approaching ‘Peak Margot-Robbie’, she feels like a natural addition to the cast of the next Mad Max film. She’s got just the wild spark you expect out of a Mad Max movie and it’d be interesting to see what George Miller would do with an actress of her versatility.
It’d be easy to imagine her being cast as someone as crazy as her character in the Suicide Squad movie, there’s also a lot of potential in casting her against this type. Regardless, it’s even easier to imagine her absolutely losing herself in the role and having a lot of fun with it.
Contributors to this article included Fergus Halliday and Carina Nilma.