Details emerge of earlier German-based plans for
Casino Royale production, Prague updates, and a full
wrap up of shooting in the Bahamas...
Casino Royale Production Diary #5
25th March 2006
News has broken this week in the German press on a couple
of production decisions that could have drastically changed
the look of "Casino Royale", the forthcoming James
Bond film due out in November 2006.
Casting Le Chiffre
German newspaper Die
Zeit revealed this week that actor Ulrich Matthes was
originally approached to play "Casino Royale"
villain Le Chiffre, but had to turn the part down due to
The 47 year-old German character actor explained that although
he would have loved to play the film's major villain, he
had already signed for a theatre production ("Virginia
Woolf") touring South America.
Ulrich stated that he received a concrete offer for the
part, which would have involved 30 days shooting. SZO
News confirmed the story and added that Danish actor
Mads Mikklesen was only offered the part of Le Chiffre after
Ulrich turned it down.
Above: Ulrich Matthes
German Production Plans
Online reported yesterday that production of "Casino
Royale" could have taken a very different turn if German
studio Berlin-Babelsberg had managed to secure a deal with Eon
Productions before StillKing Films in the Czech Republic scooped
the foreign co-producing role. Carl Woebcken, chairman of the
Berlin based Studio
Babelsberg AG, said they were in a tough fight with rival
studio Barrandov in Prague, and although they lost out for "Casino
Royale", there is a distinct possibility that they will be
the foreign co-producers on Bond 22. Woebcken cited the high wages
in Germany as the principal reason why they lost the Bond deal
to the Czech Republic in an interview with Berlin
Online, and noted that they were in talks with studios in
Bulgaria to lower future costs but keeping post-production in
Above: The Grand Canal, Venice
As MI6 exclusively
reported earlier in the year, Venice will be a major
location during the end scenes in Casino Royale. New Bond
girl Eva Green confirmed in video interviews during the
recent Bahamas press junket that shooting will take place
in the city. The location will be used as the final set-piece
for the film, with action moving from various points in
the city to the famous Grand Canal.
Special Effects Supervisor Chris Corbould confirmed in
a recent interview
that this final action sequence, the majority of which will
actually be filmed at Pinewood Studios in the UK, will be
his biggest technical challenge to date.
Bahamas Wrap Up
Prague Production Niggles
Meanwhile in Prague, where production will soon be returning
to after its stint in the Bahamas, Tschechien
reports that City Hall blocked a request from Bond co-producers
Stillking Films to close a local park. Stillking planned
to use the park on the bank of the river Moldau to house
catering and parking whilst the production shot on location
for a day.
According to the paper, dog owners, skateboarders and school
children frequent the park and the closure of the area for
one day could not be justified by deputy councilor for the
"Paraha 1" district Jana Príhodová.
Stillking Films reclined to comment on the issue according
to local press.
Above: Bond girl Caterina Murino, who
plays Solange (pictured here with her white horse), has completed
her shooting for the film.
The last sequences to be shot on location in the Bahamas involved
Bond chasing down "Bomber", played by freerunner Sebastien
Foucan. The action takes place earlier on in the film, with the
Bahamas doubling for Madagascar in the story.
Sebastien Foucan, who plays Bomber in the film, has been
shooting the crane-top chase sequence in the Bahamas - doubling
When Bond hunts down the back-packed bomber, the chase moves through
an embassy, a shanty town and eventually a construction site where
Bond utilizes brute force (in the shape of a large bulldozer) against
Bomber's agility - ultimately leading to a chase a-top huge cranes.
Foucan said of his role, "In this movie my character is chased
by Bond. Freerunning is about using the environment. It's about
how you move, climbing, rolling, everything. For me, it's an art.
It's something very natural for me. Most of the work for me has
been about the acting, about fighting, about being precise, to be
in front of the camera."
Produced by Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli (Eon
Productions) and directed by Martin Campbell, CASINO ROYALE is
scheduled for release November 17, 2006. Principal photography
started on January 30th 2006, with locations in the UK, Czech
Republic (Prague), Italy, and the Bahamas. It will be British
actor Daniel Craig’s first outing as James Bond. He is the
sixth actor to play the 007 role in the franchise.
Royale Production Diary #4
Royale Production Diary #3
Royale Production Diary #2
Royale Production Diary #1
Royale Release Dates
Royale Press Conference Video
Craig Press Conference
James Bond 007 #6 is Daniel Craig