George MillerAO (born 3 March 1945) is an Australian film director, screenwriter, producer, and former medical doctor. He is best known for his Mad Max franchise, but has been involved in a wide range of projects. These include the Academy Award-winning Babe and Happy Feet film series.
Miller is co-founder of the production houses Kennedy Miller Mitchell, formerly known as Kennedy Miller, and Dr. D Studios. His younger brother Bill Miller and Doug Mitchell have been producers on almost all the films in Miller's later career, since the death of his original producing partner Byron Kennedy.
Miller was born in Brisbane, Queensland, to Greek immigrant parents: Dimitri (Jim) Castrisios Miller and Angela Balson. Dimitri Miller was from the Greek island of Kythira and he anglicised his surname from Miliotis to Miller when he emigrated to Australia; the Balson family were Greek refugees from Anatolia. The couple married and settled in Chinchilla and had four sons. The first two were the non-identical twins George and John. Chris and Bill Miller followed.
George attended Ipswich Grammar School and later Sydney Boys High School, then studied medicine at the University of New South Wales with his twin brother John. While in his final year at medical school (1971), George and his younger brother Chris made a one-minute short film that won them first prize in a student competition. In 1971, George attended a Film Workshop at Melbourne University where he met fellow student, Byron Kennedy, with whom he formed a lasting friendship and production partnership, until Kennedy's death in a helicopter crash in 1983. In 1972, Miller completed his residency at Sydney's St Vincent's Hospital, spending his time-off crewing on short experimental films. The pair subsequently collaborated on numerous works.
Miller's background in medicine is reflected in the main character in his Mad Max movies, Max Rockatansky. This is a reference to Baron Carl von Rokitansky, who developed the most common procedure used to remove the internal organs at autopsy, still called the "Rokitansky procedure".
...ask Dr. George Miller today and he'll say that all of his movies are one and the same, whether they focus on human society or the animal kingdom, and whether they unfold against the sands of the Australian outback, the suburbs of Washington, D.C., or the ice shelves of the Antarctic. "I honestly see no difference between the essential elemental story of, let's say, The Road Warrior, Lorenzo's Oil and Babe," Miller told me earlier this month during a visit to L.A. to promote his latest film, the animated musical Happy Feet.
Kennedy Miller Mitchell is an Australian film production company founded in 1973 by George Miller and producer Byron Kennedy, as Kennedy Miller. Kennedy died in 1983. Miller kept his name in the company. In 2009, George Miller and Doug Mitchell renamed the company Kennedy Miller Mitchell.
Dr. D Studios was a Sydney-based digital animation studio founded in mid-2007 as a partnership between Kennedy Miller Mitchell and Omnilab Media. Following the financially unsuccessful release of its only film in 2011, Happy Feet Two, the studio closed down in 2013.