Tom Hardy Reportedly Landed 'Mad Max: Fury Road' Role After Spitting at Armie Hammer During Audition

An upcoming book reveals how Tom Hardy's decision to spit at Armie Hammer during their audition together helped him land the lead role in 'Mad Max: Fury Road.'

Image of Tom Hardy in 'Mad Max: Fury Road.'

Image of Tom Hardy in 'Mad Max: Fury Road.'

Image of Tom Hardy in 'Mad Max: Fury Road.'

Vulture obtained an excerpt from Kyle Buchanan’s upcoming book, Blood, Sweat & Chrome: The Wild and True Story of Mad Max: Fury Road, which details how Tom Hardy landed the role of Max Rockatansky in the Oscar-winning reboot of the 1979 original film. 

Hardy and Armie Hammer were in the running for the role when the two were asked to audition together for the part. That’s when The Dark Knight Rises star reportedly separated himself from the rest by spitting at the now embattled actor. “Near the end of the process, Hardy emerged as a front-runner alongside Jeremy Renner and Armie Hammer,” Buchanan wrote. “Hardy and Hammer even read together as part of their audition, and when Hardy gnashed his teeth and spat at his scene partner, Hammer told [George] Miller that Hardy needed to be Max more than he did.” 

Todd Matthew Grossman, cameraperson for the audition, told Buchanan that Hardy showed he was capable of embodying the nuances required for the role of Max in that audition. “He had that kind of suppressed emotional dryness that you’d find in a post-apocalypse and, buried underneath it, disdain for the world,” Grossman said. “There was this intensity that burned through the lens.” 

George Miller, director of all four films in the Mad Max franchise, said he remembers seeing similarities between Hardy and Mel Gibson, who played Max in the previous three installments. “I had the same feeling about Tom that I had when Mel Gibson first walked into the room: There was a kind of edgy charm, the charisma of animals,” he said. “You don’t know what’s going on in their inner depths, and yet they’re enormously attractive.”

A previously released excerpt revealed that Eminem was also considered to play Max, but conversations fell apart once he was told that filming would take place in Australia. Miller came away thinking the rapper “simply didn’t want to leave home.” Rihanna, Margot Robbie, and Jennifer Lawrence were among the names tossed around for the Five Wives.

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Mad Max: Fury Road received 10 Academy Award nominations, including Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Cinematography. The film walked away with six awards, but none were in the aforementioned categories. 

Blood, Sweat & Chrome: The Wild and True Story of Mad Max: Fury Road will be available for purchase on Feb. 22.

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