Get ready to return to Valhalla, because it looks like the next installment of the Mad Max franchise may very well already be underway. Mad Max: Fury Road was one of the best movies of 2015 and one of the biggest surprises both at the box office and during awards season. It makes sense that Warner Bros. would want to make a follow-up, but we hadn't heard anything about the movie getting underway. Until now.

Don't get too excited, given that nobody involved with the movie has officially said anything definitive, nor has Warner Bros., but a new report claims the movie is already well underway. According to the Herald Sun, a prequel movie with the working title of Mad Max: The Wasteland is currently gearing up for pre-production in Broken Hill, Australia. The tabloid has cited a "highly placed onset source" in regards to the rumor, for whatever that may be worth. Here is how Herald Sun tells it.

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"Pre-production is gearing up on the multi-million-dollar action-packed Warner Bros franchise, with NSW's Broken Hill Studios Miller's first choice for shooting, which could start as soon as later this year."

Director George Miller has stated in the past that he has a script ready to go for a follow up to Mad Max: Fury Road, but he has also been non-committal to the idea that he would be rushing to start up production on another movie in the franchise. According to the report, the prequel Mad Max movie will see the return of Tom Hardy and Charlize Theron and it will focus heavily on the character of Furiosa and her backstory. There have also been persistent rumors that Warner Bros. wants George Miller to direct an upcoming DC Extended Universe movie, so that would give us reason to further temper expectations that this report is indeed accurate.

Mad Max: Fury Road was a box office success and critical triumph. The movie did well enough, earning $378 million at the worldwide box office, but it was the critical reception that really helped make the fourth installment of the Mad Max franchise a big success. Fury Road was named the best movie of 2015 by many critics and it garnered ten Academy Award nominations, bringing home six wins. It was also the best-rated movie of 2015 on Rotten Tomatoes.

It is all but certain that we will see a Max Max: Fury Road sequel or prequel or one point or another, but if this report is true, it may be sooner than we thought. George Miller isn't getting any younger (he is 71 right now) so sooner might be better than later for Warner Bros. In the meantime while we wait for confirmation one way or the other about Mad Max: The Wasteland, fans can check out the recently announced Mad Max High Octane Collection, which will include a black and white version of Mad Max: Fury Road, as well as a bunch of bonus features and will be released on December 6. We will be sure to keep you posted as any information about the new Mad Max movie becomes available.