Anya Taylor-Joy: ‘Furiosa’ is ‘the filthiest, bloodiest thing I’ve ever seen’

The actress performed stunts herself, despite not having a driver’s license. “I’m afraid for the poor man or woman who takes the test on me because I’m not gentle,” she told IndieWire.

Anya Taylor Joy

Michael Buckner for Diversity

Anya Taylor-Joy is one of Hollywood’s most in-demand young actresses, and her versatility and fearlessness are undoubtedly part of the reason. The 26-year-old actress just wrapped up production on Furiosa, the highly anticipated prequel to George Miller’s 2015 action hit Mad Max: Fury Road. For her blockbuster debut, Taylor-Joy stars as Emperor Furiosa, one of the greatest action heroines of all time, in Charlize Theron’s combat boots.

“I’ve been on another planet for the last seven months,” Taylor-Joy said in a recent interview with IndieWire about filming Furiosa in Australia. “I think I need to sit down and try to digest what has happened over the last seven months. But I’m incredibly, incredibly proud of it and so proud of all the people I’ve had the privilege to work with and the amount of love, effort and work that went into it, I look forward to seeing it.”

Taylor-Joy made her screen debut the same year that Fury Road came out in Robert Eggers’ adored debut film The Witch. Set in 17th-century New England, the folk horror film established Taylor-Joy as an actress who isn’t afraid to get her hands dirty. According to their own statements, they have never been so dirty.

“It’s the dirtiest and bloodiest thing I’ve ever experienced, which means saying something, really saying something,” she said. “Anytime I’m dirty or bloody and not perfectly groomed and pretty, I’m just having fun, that’s when I’m most comfortable. So yeah, ‘Furiosa’ was definitely my thing.”

Oddly enough, Taylor-Joy doesn’t know how to drive because she plays a character known for her daring driving skills. Credit it to the fact that she has consistently worked on film sets since she was a teenager.

“Actually, I don’t have a driver’s license, so I can’t drive. I can’t drive on a freeway, I can’t parallel park, but if I have to do a whopping 180 in a truck I can do it without hitting the cameramen, which is great,” she said. “Eventually I’ll be in one place long enough to get a driver’s license and then I’ll be really happy because then I can play. But as far as the first cars go, I think I’m pretty spoiled because they were built by the ‘Mad Max’ art department.”

Wherever they eventually decide to get a license, they’d better have lenient traffic rules.

“That’s the other thing, if a driving instructor gets in my car, all I can do is crazy stunt driving,” she said. “I’m planning on getting my stunt driver certification…then I’ll be able to do all of my rides in all of the films, which would be great. But I’m scared for the poor man or woman who takes the test on me, because I’m not gentle.”

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Lindsay Lowe

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