Mad Max: Fury Road was one of the major action hits of the year and marked the first time that George Miller’s iconic character had taken to the big screen in 30 years. But what does a reboot/remake need to be a success both with the fans and at the Box Office?
We’ve taken a closer look at Mad Max: Fury Road and picked out some of the glorious things that this film has that other reboots and remakes didn’t.
If you’re going to replace an iconic figure, make sure you get the casting right. The original Mad Max films were cult classics which helped launch Mel Gibson’s career as he played the vengeful Australian policeman. Tom Hardy has shown his versatility in recent years with major roles – and he looked pretty ominous as a man with nothing to lose in Fury Road.
HOW NOT TO DO IT
Colin Farrell – Total Recall (2012)
It was always going to be difficult to fill Arnie’s boots, and Farrell just wasn’t the right man to take on the mantel. He’s done action films and is a good actor, but that wasn’t what the first film was about. The remake and Farrell were just too serious for their own good and left us simply asking “Why?”
If you’re going to reboot or remake, then you need to make sure you give fans something new without taking away any of the things that made them fall in love with the original. Fury Road sticks with the apocalyptic feel of past films without trying to get too futuristic. The visuals and characters look stunning, and all in the way Mad Max needs to be.
HOW NOT TO DO IT
Another of Paul Verhoven’s 80’s classics brought into the modern day. What was one of things we loved so much about the original? Robocop! So the last thing you should do when making a remake is completely change the look. Admittedly, Robocop couldn’t look all square and 80’s like he did back then, but the film lost a lot of fans with the visor, the colour, and the human hand!?
Reboots and remakes are difficult things to do, and the choice of director can often be a sign of things to come. Nothing gets a fan’s heart fluttering with excitement more than hearing that the original director will be returning. You know that there is potential when they are willing to risk a legacy to get back on board, especially when said director just happens to be a visionary like George Miller. Mad Max is his baby, and he wouldn’t be involved if he didn’t think he could give the fans what they want.
HOW NOT TO DO IT?
Tim Burton - Planet of the Apes (2001)
To be fair, there are hundreds of truly awful remakes and reboots. They are not easy to do, but bringing in a big name usually sends out a statement of intent to fans. It doesn’t always go to plan though as Tim Burton and his films Planet of the Apes and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory were proof that a big name director and a big budget don’t mean success. Even Bryan Singer failed with Superman Returns after making one of the best comic movies of all time in X-Men 2.
It has been 30 years since Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome. Enough time for the brand to further increase in cult status and make fans of the films back then hungry for more, while also letting enough time pass to allow a whole new generation of action-hungry film lovers to grow up and appreciate it. With the trend at the minute being superheroes and lots of CGI, Mad Max offered up a grittier kind of hero and a relatively CGI free feel.
HOW NOT TO DO IT?
The Amazing Spider-man (2012)
Five years after Spider-man 3 was just too soon for ANOTHER Spider-man origin story, which didn’t really offer anything that hadn’t already been done to death in the previous trilogy.