Beyond thunder as rains green Mad Max set

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The Independent Culture

Heavy rains have delayed shooting for "Mad Max 4" after turning the Australian Outback thriller's film set from a dust bowl into lush green pastures, a report said on Thursday.

Broken Hill, the desolate setting for the film and usually bone-dry, has been transformed into a verdant oasis by the downpours, which have broken a decade-long drought in parts of the country.

About 200 crew are in the isolated New South Wales town for pre-production, but filming has now been postponed until January, the Sydney Morning Herald said.

"You can't kick up any dust, it's too green and moist and they need dry and dusty," said Hugh Gough, of the town's Caledonian Bed and Breakfast.

Local residents are now hoping that shooting of the post-apocalyptic drama, which launched Mel Gibson's career, will not move elsewhere.

"Weather-wise it's stunning, it's been very wet and there is a lot of growth around which is not something we're renowned for," said Broken Hill mayor Wincen Cuy.

"It's pretty abnormal and we hadn't planned on it but we're led to believe (the filming) won't go anywhere else."

Broken Hill had nearly five times its average rainfall in February and 96 millimetres (3.8 inches) in just one day in March, the report said, soaking soils which sent plant life blooming.

Gibson will not be reprising his old role in "Mad Max 4: Fury Road" which will star British actor Tom Hardy alongside South African siren Charlize Theron.