One of the most striking things about the terrific Mad Max: Fury Road is that, in a sea of de-saturated post-apocalyptic films, Fury Road embraces color. Director George Miller imbues the action pic with hues that truly pop instead of going the grit-and-grime route normally reserved for dystopian landscapes (see: The Road). However, according to Miller, the best version of the movie is quite different.
Speaking with /Film, the filmmaker discussed a black and white cut of Fury Road that he says is the best version of the film:
“We spent a lot of time in DI (digital intermediate), and we had a very fine colorist, Eric Whipp. One thing I’ve noticed is that the default position for everyone is to de-saturate post-apocalyptic movies. There’s only two ways to go, make them black and white — the best version of this movie is black and white, but people reserve that for art movies now. The other version is to really go all-out on the color. The usual teal and orange thing? That’s all the colors we had to work with. The desert’s orange and the sky is teal, and we either could de-saturate it, or crank it up, to differentiate the movie. Plus, it can get really tiring watching this dull, de-saturated color, unless you go all the way out and make it black and white.”
It’s fascinating to hear Miller say he prefers this black and white version, especially since the over-saturated nature of the visuals are one of the (many) reasons Fury Road stands out as distinct amongst a sea of other blockbusters. However, if you’re curious about this black and white cut, there’s a strong possibility you’ll get to see it. Per /Film, Miller aims to put this version on the Blu-ray:
A while after this talk, during a post-film reception, I spoke with Miller about his affinity for that black and white version of Fury Road. He said that he has demanded a black and white version of Fury Road for the Blu-ray, and that version of the film will feature an option to hear just the isolated score as the only soundtrack — the purest and most stripped-down version of Fury Road you can imagine.
So that’s pretty magnificent. I imagine Fury Road will be a must-own home video release, and I only hope that the disc is stacked with hours of behind-the-scenes footage that delve deep into making of this new classic.
Check out a B&W version of the Mad Max: Fury Road trailer below (also via /Film), followed by a “deleted scene” featuring Patton Oswalt‘s stand-up comedian character, a companion to the Doof Warrior.