With worship all over the world, critical approval is almost round, and ten Oscar nominations, Mad Max: Fury Road has been heralded as the greatest 21st century blockbuster. So it’s been a frustrating few years, watching creator George Miller be blocked from making more carmageddon glory. And the reason for that has to do with bullets and gasoline – or in our timeline, money.
After years of despair, Miller announced this week that he could finally work on a sequel to the main character Fury Road, the biggest badass on the four wheels: Furiosa. And so as not to upset all the angry armpit sniffer because the woman was allowed to speak in the action film, the Max man also got two sequels. That’s three new Mad Max films in a position near the pole. And fans will be happy to tell you the reasons that should have been taken so far: the lawsuit between Miller and Warner Bros. over the studio refused to give Miller and his crew a multimillion-dollar bonus for somehow smashing billions of cars in the Namibian desert and still come under budget.
There are quick and simple rules for studio profitability that say a film must make at least twice its production budget to be truly feasible. And in that department, Fury Road proved to be very mediocre, resulting in “only” $ 370 million of the $ 150 million budget. That’s not good blockbustering. That year, the film was acquired by people like Hotel Transylvania 2, San Andreas, and Terminator: Osmosis – a film that was so forgotten that you might not realize that it wasn’t his real name. Meanwhile, Jurassic World, with an identical budget, made more than a billion dollars more, and the film’s biggest spectacle was good garbage filming.
Fury Road is a risk – extraordinarily expensive old school action based on the B-film franchise that most people only remember for Tina Turner’s haircut. And the risk was not enough to yield results so Warner Bros. would only distribute bonuses to George Miller for giving each of them half the advance of the cruise ship. And it’s not Miller’s fault or even completely Warner – it’s ours too. When the 16th edition of Avengers: Endgame left the cinema, people would throw about three billion dollars on that too big Disney trip. And if we keep going to secure franchises ten times more than new things, we will get ten times more than others, and it will take ten times longer before George Miller earns enough money so he can directly buy Australia and turn it into a big film set, like Peter Jackson did with New Zealand.