Seven years after delivering the action masterpiece, Mad Max: Fury Road, famed Australian director George Miller is back with his latest cinematic endeavor and 20-year-long passion project, Three Thousand Years of Longing, starring Idris Elba (as a freaking genie) and Tilda Swinton. However, Miller’s film is entering a landscape that’s gone through a rapid evolution since Fury Road hit theaters in 2015.
The proliferation of streaming content, which accelerated exponentially during the pandemic, has flooded the market with more films than ever before. While Miller looks at this trend with a reserved amount of exasperation at the sheer volume of it all, he also welcomes the challenge that this new landscape presents to filmmakers. Via Deadline:
“You are obliged to make your work unique in some way,” he said. “Otherwise it doesn’t stand a chance. If it falls too much into tropes or patterns that it doesn’t bring something apparently fresh in one way or another, it just doesn’t have a chance.”
Cinema, he said, was evolving, “And it’s evolving more rapidly than we ever thought. We have more so-called ‘content’ than we’ve ever had. There was a time when I felt I would see just about every film there was to see that was coming out. But that’s impossible now. Literally impossible.”
Miller obviously accepted that challenge as he sought to deliver an absolutely wild, yet personal film in Three Thousand Years of Longing that represents his own relationship with storytelling.
“A lot of me is in Alithea,” Miller said about Swinton’s character. “And the Djinn represents living storytelling, and also the effect of stories and how they can impact on the person who receives them.”
Three Thousand Years of Longing opens in theaters on August 31.