Entertainment Weekly - November 2008

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advicky
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Entertainment Weekly - November 2008

Post by advicky » Fri Oct 31, 2008 10:22 am

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Holiday Movie Preview: Cover Story

'Quantum of Solace': Bond Is Back!

And so is Daniel Craig, with more than a few scars to show for it. (Who needs 10 fingertips, anyway?) The actor who redefined 007 takes us behind the scenes of the new film -- and reveals how he feels about that curious title
By Benjamin Svetkey

Bond has a black eye. You won't see it on the screen when Quantum of Solace opens Nov. 14 — it'll be digitally airbrushed out of the movie — but it sure is hard to miss when Daniel Craig arrives at Pinewood Studios on a balmy afternoon last June. ''We were doing a fight sequence a few days ago,'' the actor explains, showing off eight fresh stitches under his puffy right eye, ''and I didn't duck. I didn't get out of the way of a stuntman's foot. You know how it is on big action movies — stuff happens.''

On Quantum of Solace, stuff seems to happen on a daily basis. In fact, there have been so many mishaps reported since shooting started last winter — a fire at Pinewood, cars taking wrong turns into lakes, fingertips getting chopped off — that the British press began calling it the ''cursed'' Bond movie. Still, don't believe everything you read in the tabloids. The James Bond who all but limps onto this studio lot outside London, wearing a black Tom Ford suit and a matching shiner, may appear battered and weary. But James Bond the character — the superspy who's survived five decades of being dangled over piranha tanks, tossed out of airplanes, shot at with spearguns, and even being played by Timothy Dalton — hasn't looked this indestructible in years

There were doubts when Daniel Craig was cast as 007 in 2005. Some hardcore fans complained that his eyes were too blue and his hair too yellow. But the 40-year-old actor turned out to be the best thing to happen to Bond since Aston Martin introduced the ejector seat. Not only did Casino Royale become the highest-grossing movie in the franchise's history — raking in $594 million worldwide — but Craig gave 007 a gritty gravitas that might have had Sean Connery tugging nervously at his shirt collar. Other stars have left their imprints — Roger Moore turned the Bond mot into an art form, Pierce Brosnan made 007 a more modern action hero — but Craig is the first to truly embrace the role as a serious dramatic acting challenge. He's certainly the first to generate so much as a whiff of Oscar buzz over a Bond film. ''I had some silly little wishes in the back of my head about how Casino Royale would be perceived,'' he says. ''But we surpassed them all. We hit all the targets.''

Now Craig is deep into his second mission — Operation Do It Again. He's shooting a scene in which Bond corners the villainous Mr. Greene (Mathieu Amalric) in his Bolivian desert hideaway. The sleek, gleaming set is a throwback to the Bondian decor of the 1960s, as if Greene hired the same decorator who did Blofeld's volcano in You Only Live Twice. Otherwise, though, Quantum of Solace is cutting-edge. For one thing, it's the first straight-out sequel, picking up the action just after Bond captures Mr. White (Jesper Christensen) at the end of Casino Royale. Turns out White and Greene are part of a conspiracy of bad guys with colorful last names. Sneakier than SPECTRE, more sinister than SMERSH, this new evil organization — called QUANTUM — is so secret not even Bond producer Barbara Broccoli can say what its initials stand for. ''If you think of something, let us know,'' she half jokes.

The title, believe it or not, could have been worse. There are only four short stories in Ian Fleming's collected works that haven't already been used for movie names. And it's harder to imagine anyone going to a Bond film called The Hildebrand Rarity, let alone The Property of a Lady or Risico. ''We had a list of other titles,'' explains producer Michael Wilson, Barbara Broccoli's half brother (Cubby Broccoli's two children have been running the franchise since the original Bond producer's death in 1996). ''But it seemed more appropriate to choose a title from Fleming's work.'' Craig had some initial concerns about the head-scratching wordage, but he's come around. ''Obviously, it raised some eyebrows,'' he says. ''But it's better than picking a title just because it has the word die in it. At least Quantum of Solace evokes the spirit of Ian Fleming's writing.''

Thankfully, it doesn't evoke it too much. Fleming's 1960 short story mostly revolves around Bond making small talk at a cocktail party in the Bahamas. Honestly, all he does for 24 pages is chat about stewardesses. In the movie, the story line takes far more eventful turns, with a mole hunt at MI6 uncovering a nest of double agents, and Bond himself, still grieving over Vesper's fate in Casino Royale, falling under suspicion. ''The world Bond inhabits in this movie is a serious mess,'' Craig says. ''Everything he thought was good turns out to be bad. Everything is upside down. Nobody knows who to trust.'' Once again, the Bond producers hired Oscar-winning writer-director Paul Haggis to work on the screenplay — he did polishes on Casino Royale — and Sony then inquired as to his interest in directing the film. Haggis delivered the script just before the deadline of last October's writers' strike, but passed on directing (too time-consuming, he said at the 2007 Los Angeles Film Festival). Instead, the producers handed the keys to the longest-running action franchise in cinematic history to a German-Swiss filmmaker who had never shot anything more action-y than Billy Bob Thornton's relationship with Halle Berry in Monster's Ball, or Johnny Depp frolicking with children in Finding Neverland.

''It's not like I was a big fan of Bond movies,'' admits Marc Forster, his accent making him sound like he just stepped out of one. ''But I met with Barbara and Michael, and they had interesting ideas. And then I met with Daniel, and I thought, 'Okay, I can make a good movie with him.''' Putting an art-house auteur in charge of a $200 million action tentpole was obviously a gamble. But, flush from Royale, the producers were feeling lucky. ''We weren't worried about the action stuff — we have a whole team of people who can help with that,'' says Broccoli. ''What we needed was a great storyteller.'' Craig concurs: ''The world is full of gadgets,'' he says. ''What you need is a great story. I mean, it's a smaller world these days. People have been everywhere. People base-jump as a hobby now. Mr. and Mrs. Whoever go to Colorado, jump off a cliff, and have tea at the bottom. So it's harder to transport the audience. You can't just show them exotic locations anymore. To make a Bond movie today, you have to do better than that.''

And, yet, you still have to make it a Bond movie. Even a director of Forster's reputation had to include at least one Bond girl in distress (in Quantum, it's Olga Kurylenko, whose character seeks payback for the death of her family when she was a child). Or a megalomaniacal Bond villain, even one who doesn't have any Blofeld-style affectations. ''I would have loved to have a cat or a metal jaw or a scar or anything,'' says Amalric, the French actor best known for his paralyzed performance in The Diving Bell and the Butterfly. ''I kept saying to Marc, 'Are you sure I can't do anything — shave my head, maybe?''' Most of all, every Bond movie, even the smartly reinvented ones, needs awesome stunts. And Quantum of Solace piles them on, opening with a harrowing high-speed car chase, then filling the rest of its 105-minute running time with explosive boat battles, aerial dogfights, and the sort of brutal hand-to-hand combat that would have sent George Lazenby fleeing into M's arms. Like Casino Royale, the action in this film has an edgier, extra-crunchy vibe. This isn't the sort of Bond who coolly dispatches a bad guy with a karate chop to the neck; he's more likely to wring a villain's throat with his bare hands until he hears the snap of a spine. And, more than any previous Bond, Connery included, Craig makes you feel his character's pain.

The action scene Craig has been shooting here at Pinewood all week, for instance, is a vicious sequence in which Bond and Greene tear at each other with fire axes, metal rods, and bare bloody fists. The violence is so visceral, some crew members can't pull their eyes from it even during a break in filming. While everyone else eats lunch, a group of grips kills time by huddling at a video monitor in a corner of the soundstage, watching two-day-old footage of Craig's face being introduced to a stuntman's foot and trying to locate the precise moment of impact. ''Ouch'' is all one of them says when they finally find the spot.

To be fair, the first car accident on Quantum of Solace's set wasn't the film crew's fault. That incident involved a $265,000 Aston Martin DBS that was being driven to a filming location in Italy last April by a company engineer. Evidently mistaking it for the submarine model, the driver parked the car in Lake Garda. His underwater escape was as cool as Roger Moore's breathing-through-a-tire-valve trick in A View to a Kill. ''The driver woke up when he hit the bottom,'' Broccoli says. ''He tried to climb out the window, but his jacket got caught on the car door. So he had to take his jacket off — underwater — and swim to the surface.''

There was a second, more serious crash in Italy a few days later — a stunt driver ended up in intensive care after a head-on collision during a chase sequence (he's since recovered). The unlucky streak followed the crew back to Pinewood, where a fire in June reportedly torched some outdoor sets (Sony denies that Quantum was affected). On the bright side: Craig didn't actually lose a finger when he snagged his hand in a door while shooting in June, as initially rumored. He simply snipped the tip. But the British press couldn't resist finger-pointing headlines that the movie was ''jinxed.'' Craig bristles at the word. ''Look, we're doing potentially dangerous things,'' he says. ''We have huge safety measures, but we pack a huge amount into a very short period. And when you do that, accidents happen. They happened on Casino Royale. I got a black eye on that movie, too.''

After Quantum, Craig is signed for two more Bond films. That's a lot of black eyes in his future, among other injuries. In fact, just last month the actor turned up at the photo shoot for this magazine's cover with his arm in a sling (after surgery, to repair a shoulder injury reportedly aggravated by the Quantum shoot). Still, the job has its benefits; it helped score costarring gigs alongside Nicole Kidman (in last year's The Invasion) and Ewan McGregor (in next year's I, Lucifer), and helped him push low-budget projects into production (like this December's WWII drama Defiance). ''Sure, you could say we've had a run of bad luck,'' he says, giving his stitches a scratch. ''But most of the time, it's great. Being Bond has changed my life in ways I never could have expected.'' So far, at least, the stunt work hasn't ended it.

http://www.ew.com/ew/package/0,,20159002,00.html

I know it is an article and not picture, but I wanted that these things are in the same place.

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Dunda
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Re: Entertainment Weekly - November 2008

Post by Dunda » Fri Oct 31, 2008 10:47 am

advicky wrote:
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OMG, this pic is to die for, even if the strange angle makes his BIG hand HUGE :lol:

This "Craig's face being introduced to a stuntman's foot " this made me laugh...Daniel said something simliar in an interview...can't remember which one....seems as if I'm growing old or it's just the flood of vids :wink:
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Re: Entertainment Weekly - November 2008

Post by Daskedusken » Fri Oct 31, 2008 11:09 am

Dunda wrote:
advicky wrote:
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OMG, this pic is to die for, even if the strange angle makes his BIG hand HUGE :lol:
His hand looks gigantic on this one :P And I love the look on his face.
"Leben ist zeichnen ohne Radiergummi"

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Lu
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Post by Lu » Fri Oct 31, 2008 11:23 am

oh wow, that pic gets me going. :twisted: :twisted:

I subscribe to this magazine, I can't wait to get it in my mailbox. :D
My books!
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Deb
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Post by Deb » Fri Oct 31, 2008 11:33 am

Lu wrote:oh wow, that pic gets me going. :twisted: :twisted:

I subscribe to this magazine, I can't wait to get it in my mailbox. :D
This made me laugh. You were the first person I thought of when I saw it Lu :lol: :lol:

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Dunda
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Post by Dunda » Fri Oct 31, 2008 1:11 pm

Deb wrote:
Lu wrote:oh wow, that pic gets me going. :twisted: :twisted:

I subscribe to this magazine, I can't wait to get it in my mailbox. :D
This made me laugh. You were the first person I thought of when I saw it Lu :lol: :lol:
same here! :lol: :lol: :lol:
I almost heared her gasping! :twisted:
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Post by Cicero » Sat Nov 01, 2008 10:56 am

Gorgeous pic of our man :D :D
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Post by Faustine » Sun Nov 02, 2008 1:21 am

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Post by Daniel_Craig » Sun Nov 02, 2008 10:36 am

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Last edited by Daniel_Craig on Sat May 07, 2016 7:33 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Elvenstar » Sun Nov 02, 2008 11:15 am

Thanks for the scans!!!!!!!!!
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Laredo
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Post by Laredo » Sun Nov 02, 2008 8:38 pm

This is turning out to be an expensive month for me as far as buying magazines goes . thanks for the pics .
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Post by Daskedusken » Sun Nov 02, 2008 9:26 pm

laredo wrote:This is turning out to be an expensive month for me as far as buying magazines goes . thanks for the pics .
Hehe...for me too....
"Leben ist zeichnen ohne Radiergummi"

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