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Charlize Theron ‘Didn’t Feel Safe’ With Tom Hardy On ‘Mad Max: Fury Road’ Set; Enlisted Protection, New Book Claims

It’s been years since the 2015 blockbuster “Mad Max: Fury Road” was released, but the film became a topic of conversation all over again thanks to a tell-all book detailing some tense situations on set. New York Times culture reporter Kyle Buchanan penned the non-fiction account “Blood, Sweat & Chrome: The Wild and True Story of  Mad Max: Fury Road.”

The most surprising allegations in the book have to do with the relationship between co-stars Tom Hardy and Charlize Theron. An excerpt from the book detailing the cast and crew witnessing an altercation was published to Vanity Fair this week.

“I remember vividly the day,” camera operator Mark Goellnicht said in the book. “The call on set was eight o’clock. Charlize got there right at eight o’clock, sat in the War Rig, knowing that Tom’s never going to be there at eight even though they made a special request for him to be there on time.”

Hardy “was notorious for never being on time in the morning,” Goellnicht explained. “If the call time was in the morning, forget it — he didn’t show up.”

“Eleven o’clock. She’s now in the War Rig [a giant truck], sitting there with her makeup on and a full costume for three hours,” Goellnicht recalled. 

“Tom turns up, and he walks casually across the desert. She jumps out of the War Rig, and she starts swearing her head off at him, saying, ‘Fine the f***ing c**t a hundred thousand dollars for every minute that he’s held up this crew,’ and ‘How disrespectful you are!’ She was right. Full rant.”

“He charged up to her up and went, ‘What did you say to me?’” the cameraman continued. “He was quite aggressive. She really felt threatened, and that was the turning point, because then she said, ‘I want someone as protection.’ She then had a producer that was assigned to be with her all the time.”

“Boy f***ing howdy, was it clear that those two people hated each other,” editor J. Houston Yang agreed. “They didn’t want to touch each other, they didn’t want to look at each other, they wouldn’t face each other if the camera wasn’t actively rolling.”

Co-star Nicholas Hoult said the on-set atmosphere was like being “on your summer holidays and the adults in the front of the car are arguing.” 

Theron agreed with that assessment, saying, “It was horrible! We should not have done that; we should have been better. I can own up to that.”

“It got to a place where it was kind of out of hand, and there was a sense that maybe sending a woman producer down could maybe equalize some of it, because I didn’t feel safe,” Theron said, according to the book.

“In hindsight, I was in over my head in many ways,” Hardy said in the book. “The pressure on both of us was overwhelming at times. What she needed was a better, perhaps more experienced partner in me. That’s something that can’t be faked. I’d like to think that now that I’m older and uglier, I could rise to that occasion.”

Goellnicht also remembers when the vibe on set shifted, with Hardy and Theron reaching a truce and overcoming their animosity. 

“That scene where you see Tom with Charlize on the bike and all the Vuvalini and the Wives behind, intermingled — that scene was probably the biggest change in seeing Tom really soften to Charlize in real life,” the cameraman recalled. 

“We were all unprepared for how he performed that, and then I walked off and Charlize was walking back, and I said, ‘Geez, Charlize, that was amazing. Did a light switch go off? He was great.’ She was quite taken aback by it, too.”

“He was a different person by the end,” Goellnicht continued. “A lot easier to deal with, a lot more cooperative, more compassionate.”

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