Mel Gibson was replaced by younger actor in the "Mad Max" franchise because he was too old. Director George Miller said he was not sure the 58-year-old actor could commit to three more movies.
Gibson made a name for himself 30 years ago when he starred as Max Rockatansky in first movie of the trilogy. Miller, who directed him in all three movies, originally wanted Gibson to return for the fourth film but opted for Tom Hardy instead. It soon became a rumor that Gibson's scandals led him to being optioned out.
"I have a great affection for Mel. I was really heartbroken to see him go into (the scandals)," Miller said in an interview, debunking the rumor. "But it's a new time. I hope Mel gets to act in more movies because I think he's a wonderful actor. But I think he's an amazingly good director."
"Mad Max: Fury Road" is set in the furthest reaches of our planet, in a stark desert landscape where humanity is broken, and most everyone is crazed fighting for the necessities of life. Charlize Theron also stars.
"You're picking up the characters and the backstory as you go," Miller said. "And in order to create that backstory, we found ourselves having written two other screenplays. One of them is completed. The other one is in the form of a kind of unedited novel. So by the time we got there, we realized we've got a couple more Mad Max stories to tell, and that ...required us to cast someone who was younger."
"Mad Max: Fury Road" hits theaters in the U.S. on May 15, 2015.