New South Wales is gearing up for the biggest movie shoot to ever hit Australia, as director George Miller has officially announced a 2022 production start date for the Mad Max: Fury Road prequel Furiosa. The story is a time-spanning saga that chronicles the earliest days of Charlize Theron’s iconic Mad Max character, with Anya Taylor-Joy playing Furiosa in her younger years. Both Anya Taylor Joy and Chris Hemsworth, who will be her co-star in the action epic, can’t wait to begin production, with the team already preparing for the shoot next year.

This will be one of the biggest roles of Anya Taylor Joy’s career. The actress was rumored early on to be taking over for Charlize Theron. It is now officially confirmed that she will play Furiosa. Speaking with MTV’s Happy Sad Confused podcast in October, the Queen’s Gambit breakout favorite and New Mutants headliner had this to say about continuing the Mad Max saga on the big screen.

RELATED: Furiosa Is Biggest Shoot in Australia’s History, Fury Road Prequel Begins Filming in 2022

“I was amazed by this incredible mind of George Miller. It’s difficult to put into words. I feel so humbled and grateful. I think the first thing I thought was ‘I am so excited to work so hard.’ The level of commitment that has been shown by those who came before me, I endeavor to match that. That makes me really excited. I have so much respect for the originators of this crazy world and this collection of characters. I am excited to work really hard.”

Director George Miller has been planning Furiosa before Mad Max: Fury Road even hit theaters. The story will follow Furiosa as a teenager into her early twenties. And it’s possible that the origin of her metal arm will be revealed. The story doesn’t take place over a couple of days, as Fury Road did, but will instead be an epic that sweeps through many years in the Mad Max timeline. Chris Hemsworth is not replacing Tom Hardy as Mad Max. It is expected that he will play an original character not yet introduced in the past four movies. Anya Taylor-Joy went onto say this about starring in the Fury Road prequel.

“I fell in love with Furiosa because of the way Charlize presented her. She did such an incredible job. It was so beautiful. I can’t even think about trying to step into her shoes. It has to be something different because it just can’t be done.”

Anya Taylor-Joy has some history with recreating a classic character on the big screen taking on the lead role of Illyana Rasputin in The New Mutants. She has also carved out her own unique path with original characters starting with Thomasin in the 2015 period horror thriller The VVitch. She portrayed Casey Cooke in both M. Night Shyamalan movies Split and Glass, and she’ll next be seen in Edgar Wright’s completed thriller Last Night in Soho. But it was the Queen’s Gambit that made her a household name with the character Beth Harmon. The role won her a Golden Globe, a Critics Choice award, and a SAG Award. But taking on Furiosa is something completely new and different for the actress. She goes onto say this about winning the coveted role.

“I’ve already started dreaming about [Furiosa] and she’s coming in very strong. I’m so committed to working as hard as possible as I can. I always said that I wanted a role that I would have to give everything to, it wouldn’t just be my mind but my body, what I’m doing with myself when I’m not on set. I’m so excited for that and to push myself past the limits of what my brain thought was possible.”

Chris Hemsworth character hasn’t been revealed at this time. But he appears to be just as excited for Mad Max: Furiosa as his young co-star. The Thor actor celebrated the big production launch news on social media, and expressed his eagerness to start filming. He says this about the impending shoot, which he has a year to get ready for, with the movie scheduled to hit theaters in 2023.

“Great press conference discussing mad max Furiosa. Huge thanks to George Miller and Doug Mitchell for the opportunity and state and federal government for all their support and making it possible to shoot here in NSW Australia. Can’t wait to kick it off. Gonna pour my heart, soul, blood sweat and tears into this one!!”

This news originated at MTV’s Happy Sad Confused podcast.

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