Where was ‘Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga’ filmed? All the Australian filming locations behind the action epic

Producer Doug Mitchell takes us on an exclusive photographic tour of the Wasteland

Phil de Semlyen
Written by
Phil de Semlyen
Global film editor
Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga
Photograph: Warner Bros.Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga

'Max Max started in Australia and it's back in Australia – as it's meant to be.’

For Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga producer Doug Mitchell the latest addition to the Mad Max canon represents an emotional homecoming. Thanks to a sudden deluge and a subsequent burst of non-dystopian-looking greenery in Broken Hill, Mad Max: Fury Road had to pack up and ship to Namibia for its shoot, but Furiosa takes writer-director George Miller and his franchise back home for its tale of revenge, conquest and post-apocalyptic chaos.

‘We shot for eight months to capture a story that takes place across 15 years,’ says Mitchell. ‘It's not Fury Road where you're outside being chased from one end of the film to the other. This one is told through the geography of the abduction of a 13-year-old from a little oasis in the Green Place.’ 

That presented new challenges. This time the Bullet Farm and Gas Town needed to feature, alongside a return visit to Immortan Joe’s imposing Citadel, and, of course, the Green Place – back when it was still green. All those locations had to be found, built and pieced together on screen, a mammoth task that took Furiosa and its stars, Anya Taylor-Joy and Chris Hemsworth, across New South Wales. Mitchell takes us behind the scenes to explain how they did it.

Photograph: Jasin Boland/Warner Bros.George Miller in action on the film’s Broken Hill set

Broken Hill, New South Wales

For George Miller, this sunbaked corner of Outback New South Wales is Mad Max’s own Valhalla – the special sauce that’s made this most Aussie of franchises cook since Road Warrior back in 1981 (the first Mad Max filmed in and around Melbourne). The nearby settlement of Silverton even has its own prop-filled Mad Max 2 Museum.

Says Mitchell: If you were affected by The Road Warrior, as I was, there is just something about the landscape. No matter what the weather was like this time, we were going to shoot in Broken Hill. It was a great feeling to be there.’

Photograph: Jasin Boland/Warner Bros.Miller giving Chris Hemsworth direction on the Broken Hill set of Furiosa

Filming began in Broken Hill, where the quality of light and sense of solitude lent a spiritual quality to the batshit action spectacular unfolding on screen. 

At the production’s bustling HQ, it was a different story. ‘You've got a thousand people needing latrines, food and accommodation,’ says Mitchell. ‘There are 119,000 meals served across a film like this, and millions and millions of dollars of hotel room. The infrastructure is vast.

Photograph: Jasin Boland/Warner Bros.‘Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga’s War Rig sequence was filmed at Hay, NSW

Hay, New South Wales

 A town in the southwestern Riverina area of NSW, a thousand miles south of Broken Hill, Hay was extensively used for the movie’s huge second unit action sequences. Mitchell – and no doubt one or two proud locals – refer to it as ‘Haywood’, such was the scale of Furiosa’s takeover of the town. ‘We had two units shooting with a crew of a thousand people between here and Broken Hill,’ the producer remembers.

It took 72 days, 40 cameras and 250 stunt people to pull off the movie’s mind-blowing War Rig ambush sequence. ‘I was with George and we were communicating with (stunt coordinator) Guy Norris and his team. Nowadays, it’s done in a bus with all these monitors showing us what the hell’s happening in every unit.’

Photograph: Jasin Boland/Warner Bros.On location in Kurnell, Sydney

Kurnell, New South Wales

The sand dunes at Kurnell, an oceanside suburb in Sydney’s Sutherland Shire, already have Mad Max pedigree: they once hosted the crashed 747 scene in Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome. Furiosa took the franchise back in late 2022 to film scenes between Chris Hemsworth’s Dementus and Anya Taylor-Joy’s Furiosa. ‘[The photo above] is where Dementus discovers that he's been hunted down by Furiosa. ‘We filmed near Sydney Airport on a big sand dune that we'd used before in Three Thousand Years of Longing. Chris had to get to that set at 4am so he could have four hours of make-up.’

Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga
Photograph: Warner BrothersThe huge Bullet Farm gates were constructed at Kurnell

The skeletal framework Bullet Farm was also filmed in Kurnell, with production designer Colin Gibson constructing its massive gates above a quarry. ‘The Bullet Farm is like one of the Brazilian mines where all these people are stuck down in this hole,’ says Mitchell. 

Terrey Hills, Sydney

Furiosa opens with a visit to the Green Place, the lush, arcadian home of a young Furiosa (Alyla Browne) and her family. Here, a chance encounter with a group of Hemsworth’s warlord, Dementus’s gang members on a peach-picking expedition sets the plot in motion. ‘We filmed the Green Place in North Sydney,’ says Mitchell, ‘which that allowed us to find the peach tree and bridge it to the deserts beyond.’ 

Thanks to VFX trickery, the Green Place also has a bit of Blue Mountains to it. ‘We [photographer] rocks in the Blue Mountains and used them in montage as a backdrop to the Green Place,’ says Mitchell.

Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga
Photograph: Warner Bros.

Disney Studios, Sydney

Miller and Mitchell have been filming in the Sydney studio – once Fox Studios, now Disney’s lot – since Babe: Pig in the City. They were back for the Citadel scenes to show Furiosa finding her way into Immortan Joe’s retinue. ‘We created huge sets which involved a lot of the interior of the Citadel,’ says Mitchell. ‘We had a lot of wet weather [during filming] and that's a killer. You sit on your arse for a week, you've wasted a million dollars. In Sydney, everyone's living there so you don't have to pay.’

Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga
Photograph: Jasin Boland/Warner Bros.Tom Burke, Anya Taylor-Joy and some War Boys on the set of Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga

Melrose Park, Sydney

The northwest Sydney suburb of Melrose Park was used to create another one of Furiosa’s three neo-medieval citadels. ‘We did Gas Town there,’ says Mitchell. ‘We used this old handling depot that they were about to break down. It was another massive set.’

A franchise that started out with a crew of 35 and camera operators clinging precariously to the back of bikes is an unrecognisable operation these days, notes the producer. ‘We’ve got a thousand people and we're constantly moving to get the noise and the drama. George Miller doesn't do white-noise action.’

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