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Rumours of Russell Beale casting in Bond 23 resurface

03-Dec-2010 • Skyfall

According to today's newspaper reports, English actor Russell Beale is being considered for a sizable role in the 23rd James Bond film.

Beale is currently performing in "Deathtrap" at the Noël Coward theatre in London, and recently appeared as the Home Secretary in the latest season of BBC telvision's MI5 thriller series "Spooks".

Beale and Mendes are planning to work together in a high-profile production of "King Lear" in 2012 at the National Theatre.

Kate Winslet revealed in the Daily Mail today that Sam Mendes and James Bond producer Barbara Broccoli have already had many meetings over casting, and Ms Broccoli has visited the play "Deathtrap" twice to see Simon Russell Beale perform. The leading actor is an old friend of Sam’s and they’re "keen to work together again".

Back in January, Beale admitted that he yearned for a part in the next Bond movie: "Every actor wants to be in Bond. I'd love to be a baddie. I saw Sam just before Christmas and dropped a hint – and he just looked wearily at me."

The duo first worked together during Mendes's stint at the Donmar, which he transformed into a space in which the biggest box-office stars clamoured to appear. Mendes cast Russell Beale in his twin farewell productions when he finally left the theatre in 2002, as Uncle Vanya, and as Malvolio in Twelfth Night. He cast him again in two productions last year, as part of his Bridge project linking shows at the Brooklyn Academy and the Old Vic: as Leontes in The Winter's Tale, and Lophakhin in The Cherry Orchard. Both productions won a string of awards for actor and director on both sides of the Atlantic.

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