‘Furiosa’ Director George Miller Explains Why Anya Taylor-Joy Gets Just 30 Lines of Dialogue

The “Mad Max” franchise filmmaker says that he believes too many words slow movies down

"Furiosa" (Warner Bros.)
"Furiosa" (Warner Bros.)

When “Furiosa” has its official premiere at the Cannes Film Festival this month, the amount of dialogue from its lead may surprise audiences. Despite portraying the titular character for the entire two-and-a-half hour desert sprint, lead actress Anya Taylor-Joy only has around 30 lines — total.

Director George Miller told The Telegraph that the reason is simple: for him, movies should be fast. He believes that dialogue slows them down.

Miller also reflected back on the filming of 2015’s “Mad Max: Fury Road” and shared stories of costars Charlize Theron and Tom Hardy constantly arguing with one another.

“They were just two very different performers,” Miller said. “Tom has a damage to him but also a brilliance that comes with it, and whatever was going on with him at the time, he had to be coaxed out of his trailer. Whereas Charlize was incredibly disciplined – a dancer by training, which told in the precision of her performance – and always the first one on set.”

Things got better over time, he added. “I’m an optimist, so I saw their behavior as mirroring their characters, where they had to learn to cooperate in order to ensure mutual survival,” Miller explained.

It seems that Hardy and Theron’s feud impacted how Miller approached “Furiosa.” He told the outlet that he had a conversation with Taylor-Joy and costar Chris Hemsworth about maintaining a calm shoot. “You have to be obsessive about safety – physical safety, as the shoot goes on and fatigue sets in, but also psychological safety,” the director explained.

Later in the interview, Miller revealed that by the time filming on the 1979 original was finished, he was convinced that the movie was a flop — until countries around the world began to pick up distribution rights.

“It screened in Japan, and they said, ‘Oh, you’ve made a samurai film,’” he said. “Then in Scandinavia, we heard they’d thought it was a modern-day Viking movie. In France, they said, ‘It’s a western on wheels.’ I suddenly realized what I had thought was a very Australian story had tapped into all sorts of universal archetypes and themes.”

Read the entire interview with George Miller at The Telegraph.

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