Now, in an oral history of the film published by The New York Times, the pair opened up about the fighting, as did some of their co-stars.
"All of those young girls kind of turned to me as someone who would problem-solve for them, and this is not anybody’s fault -- I only say this now because I know [director] George [Miller] and I’ve experienced this with George, so I’d fully trust him," Theron said. "But I’ve also trusted directors fully when I didn’t comprehend what they were trying to do, and it just turned into a mess."
While she may have looked to Theron for guidance, Huntington-Whiteley, 33, said that it was the differences between the stars' approaches that led to "tension."
"There was a lot of tension, and a lot of different personalities and clashes at times," Huntington Whiteley told The Times. "It was definitely interesting to sit in a truck for four months with Tom and Charlize, who have completely different approaches to their craft."
Unlike Theron, Hardy, 42, was focused on rolling with the punches and letting go of control.
"Because of how much detail we were having to process and how little control one had in each new situation, and how fast the takes were -- tiny snippets of story moments were needed to make the final cut work -- we moved fast, and it was at times overwhelming," he said. "One had to trust that the bigger picture was being held together."
Such differences led to on-set strife, as Kravitz, 31, noted.
"Tom really had moments of frustration, of anger. Charlize did, too, but I feel like he’s the one who really took it out on George the most, and that was a bummer to see," she told the outlet. "But you know, in some ways, you also can’t blame him, because a lot was being asked of these actors and there were a lot of unanswered questions."
Theron explained that, at the time, she wasn't taking into consideration the pressure that was placed on Hardy to play such an iconic character, having been played by Mel Gibson is several films beforehand.
"In retrospect, I didn’t have enough empathy to really, truly understand what he must have felt like to step into Mel Gibson’s shoes. That is frightening," Theron said. "And I think because of my own fear, we were putting up walls to protect ourselves instead of saying to each other, 'This is scary for you, and it’s scary for me, too. Let’s be nice to each other.'"
She added: "In a weird way, we were functioning like our characters: Everything was about survival."
"I think in hindsight, I was in over my head in many ways. The pressure on both of us was overwhelming at times," he said. "What she needed was a better, perhaps more experienced, partner in me. That’s something that can’t be faked. I’d like to think that now that I’m older and uglier, I could rise to that occasion."
Despite the contention, the film was a huge success, grossing $375,209,362, according to IMDb, as well as taking home six Oscars. The film was also nominated for best picture at the Oscars and the Golden Globes.