Petition Calls For Mad Max 'Interceptor' To Be Brought Home To Australia
It was the movie that put Australian cinema on the map, and now there is a call to bring the 'star' of Mad Max home to Australia.
The iconic 'Interceptor' is available for purchase, with current owner Michael Dezer in the U.S. putting it up for private sale.
The cinematic icon has been displayed in museum collections in the U.K. and U.S. since it went on tour around Australia in the 1980s.
Dave Carey, a motoring writer, started the petition at the behest of car publication Street Machine after he wrote an article about the sale.
The petition is levelled at the philanthropy of a private donor or the federal government and Minister for Arts, Paul Fletcher, to call on the government to bring the car "home", or a combination of both.
Carey told 10 daily the petition isn't about fundraising to bring it back to Australia, but to show there is serious interest from the public for it to be returned.
"We're not doing it as a joke, we're not asking people for money," Carey told 10 daily.
"The money would come from the Australian arts budget, not taking money away from things like hospitals."
Carey said major museums around the country have shown interest in displaying the car if it can be brought back to Australia.
The 'Interceptor' became part of Australian pop culture after appearing in the original 'Mad Max' film in 1979.
The 1973 Ford Falcon XB GT Coupe was modified by the film's director George Miller and producer Byron Kennedy to give it the grunt needed for Max Rockatansky to get his revenge.
The coupe, which was initially called a 'Pursuit Special', was given a makeover, including two fuel engines and the spoiler removed, for the sequel 'Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior' in 1981.
It was modified again in 2012 by custom car builder Jim Martino, to restore it closer to the original.
Carey, who sees himself more as a car enthusiast than a film buff, believes the car is a nostalgic memento for many Australians.
"I was in the generation, that when it got restored mid-'80s and started getting toured, you could see it at a $2 peep show at motor shows and in agriculture tents," he said.
"The amount of people who have said to me 'oh mate I saw that car, I bought a T-shirt, a poster'."
While the vehicle has a special place in Australian cinematic history, it also has a strong place in the history of motor design.
The iconic nose front of the car in the first film was designed by Peter Arcadipane, who worked at Ford at the time.
Arcadipane has since gone on to become a leading figure in the industry, working with Mercedes and Mitsubishi.
It's been nearly 30 years since the last time the car was up for grabs, and Carey believes now is right time for it to be brought back to Australia.
"If we don't secure it now for the Australian public it might be even harder the next time, the value is not going to go down," he said.
"We've had a really positive response (to the petition) so far."
At the time of writing, more than 3,000 people have signed the petition, which can be found here.