Mad Max: Fury Road is furiously burning up the box office, earning $45.45 million in America and $109.5m worldwide in its first few days of release. Described as a "sardonic $150 million budgeted 3D demented demolition derby of a movie" that "throws everything to the wind and cuts to the chase for an insanely wild 2 hour ride," this film is, at its heart, is a car flick. E3 Spark Plugs introduces you the guy behind crazy onscreen rides.
Meet Mad Max production designer Colin Gibson. Charged with a mission by director George Miller to "Make it cool or I'll kill you," Gibson did just that, primarily by making sure every single car in the film would be fully functional. To that end, Gibson and his crew created a total of 150 vehicles of 88 separate designs, leaving plenty of room for backups and blow ups. And it's a good thing they did. More than half of the on-set rides were destroyed during production.
The destruction of those dozens of rides comes as no surprise when you consider Gibson's aim to create believable scenes. He tells reporters that he went into the project aiming to do serve up just the opposite of the cool but unrealistic scenes we've come to love in the wildly successful Fast & Furious franchise.
"All that sort of stuff annoys me," Gibson told TheYoungFolks.com "So hopefully I kept the physics as real as possible, guaranteeing that the cars and the people on the cars could actually do what they were being asked to do. Hopefully the hair on everybody's neck stands up just a little straighter and a little realer."
Gibson also reveals that nearly all of the stunts in the movie were practical, with CGI kept to a minimum. Still, a few do seem pretty incredulous.
"Just because it's an 18-wheeler driving through a sand dune at 45 degrees, that's not an excuse for slowing down," he says.
And while the film is made for a whole new generation of Mad Max fans (the original was released in 1979), it opens with a respectful nod to the past.
"When it was decided that we had a different Max, that Tom Hardy was the new Mad Max, it became even more of an imperative that we begin the film with the Max's car, the Interceptor," Gibson explained. "We wanted to make a four-wheel version of the legend just so that we could hand off the mythology in a nice, neat piece of history. So George [Miller] very cleverly opens the movie with the car from Mad Max's original outings, and then has Max roll it and get captured in the opening moments. That's a bit of a hand-off, a nod to mythology, and the beginning of a brave, new world."
Have you seen Mad Max: Fury Road? Which of the film's rides would you most like to drive home? Post your thoughts on the E3 Spark Plugs Facebook Fan Page.