Where do you draw the line between artistic integrity and appeasing your audience?
Essentially that’s the question that George Miller came down to in post-production of his 2015 summer blockbuster Mad Max. Mega-action films such as this one have to live up to massive expectations to look like the over-stimulating Michael Bay-esque style of film: bright colors, big explosions, fast cars and big guns etc.
Miller certainly didn’t shy away from those action institutions. Though there’s a huge disparity already between Mad Max and let’s say, a Transformers film when it comes down to editing, scoring, writing and a long list of other reasons. That being said, when releasing the film, Miller spoke out about his inclination to edit the movie in black and white, rather than the over-saturated color look the film ended up with. He says ultimately that the decision came down to what people expected:
“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.”
That’s why one artist recently recut parts of the film together with different scoring and editing and de-saturating the film down to black and white to give the film it’s intended look. Unfortunately that video has since been removed as The Creators Project points out. IGN has since stepped in and de-saturated one Mad Max trailer to get a similar effect. That video is available in the player above.
Check out some stills from the re-cut trailer below: