Mad Max film delay as landscape 'too green'
Production of the sequel to the Mad Max films has been suspended because the desert-like landscape in which it was to be shot is too green.
Mad Max 4: Fury Road was due to be filmed over the next few months in and around the outback town of Broken Hill, in the far west of the state of New South Wales, Australia.
However, recent heavy rains have turned the dusty plains surrounding the town into rolling grassland.
Broken Hill and the nearby Mundi Mundi plains, which were surveyed for the film last year, received 4.3 inches of rain in February, which is well above the monthly average of 0.9 inches.
The lush and verdant landscape is somewhat at odds with the Mad Max aesthetic, which calls for post-apocalyptic scenes of hot, dry desolation.
The dystopian action films tell the story of Max Rockatansky, originally played by Mel Gibson, who roams the parched outback with nothing but his dog and a gun after his family is murdered by a motorcycle gang.
In the hope that the coming summer months will dry out the land and turn the grass back to scrub, Kennedy Miller Productions has pushed filming back to January.
The company told a community meeting that bookings with local hotels would be moved to the beginning of next year.
Hugh Gough, of the Caledonian Bed and Breakfast in Broken Hill said the landscape around the notoriously dry town had changed significantly in recent weeks.
"The desert is a desert no more," he said.
"It's quite green, there's a lot of growth and we've got some lovely wildflowers coming up.
"So it is lovely for the people who live here, but it is a bit difficult for the people who are filming Fury Road.
"But they're working around it and the community absolutely supports that." When filming starts, an estimated 500 crew members are expected to descend on the town, which has a population of 18,800.
Mad Max 4, which stars British actor Tom Hardy in the lead role, is due to be released in 2012.