The villains of Casino Royale enjoy the limelight
for this edition, plus the latest production updates
and rumour quashing...
Casino Royale Production Diary #6
18th April 2006
The first photo of Danish actor Mads Mikkelsen as villain Le Chiffre
online. The Casino Royale baddy has been shooting in Prague
for three weeks, and has three weeks left to complete his scenes.
Mikkelsen revealed in an interview with a Danish newspaper that
his first week on set in Prague was without Daniel Craig (James
Bond) and director Martin Campbell, who were still in the Bahamas.
Mikkelsen also reveals in the article that his character,
Le Chiffre, invites the world's best poker players to an
"everything or nothing" high stakes game. Bond,
of course, takes part in an attempt to bankrupt the terrorist
financier. The image (hosted
on AICN) shows Mikkelsen in full character make-up for
his role as Le Chiffre, complete with an eye-scar
Isaach de Bankole has been cast as Obanno, one of the villains
in the forthcoming James Bond movie "Casino Royale"
- reports Variety.
The 48 year-old Ivory Coast actor recently wrapped the role
of Neptune in Universal's "Miami Vice". Isaach
was discovered on the streets of Paris while studying to
be an airline pilot. He has a degree in Acting from Cours
Simon and a Masters in Mathematics from the Universite de
Few details of his character have been released, but Obanno
is thought to be a rogue African military chief who gives
Le Chiffre fund to looks after.
Above: Isaach de Bankole will play Obanno
Production Schedule Update
Director Martin Campbell is scheduled to conclude principal photography
on Casino Royale in the Czech Republic at the end of May. The
final shots in the country will take place in Czech spa town Karlovy
Vary, which will double as Montenegro - reports Screen
Above: Pinewood Studios
MGM executives toured the set of Casino Royale in Prague
on April 6. In town to promote the planned launch of the
MGM Channel in central Europe, MGM chairman and CEO Harry
Sloan, COO Rick Sands, MGM Networks executive VP Bruce Tuchman
and others toured Barrandov Studios sound stages where Campbell
was filming a critical gambling scene between James Bond,
played by Daniel Craig, and villain Le Chiffre, played by
Danish actor Mads Mikkelsen.
Although Bond and Le Chiffre play baccarat in Ian Fleming’s
1953 novel, the game will be Texas Hold ‘Em poker
in the 21st Bond film. Casino Royale’s filming in
the Bahamas wrapped April 5th. The Caribbean location stands
in for Madagascar, where Casino Royale begins with Bond
chasing down and apparently killing a villain.
From Prague, filming will move to Venice for exteriors for five
days, after which it returns to Pinewood Studios in the UK. The
climactic action scenes will make use of the water tank on Pinewood’s
007 stage. The existing tank is being made deeper for Casino Royale,
growing from a current depth of 8 feet to 20 feet.
Craig On Bond
Daniel Craig told BBC
One's Film 2006 host Jonathan Ross all the traditional
Bond elements would be in place. Craig, then on location
in the Bahamas, said: "I just wanted to see him make
a few mistakes. I want to make the audience believe that
it's all going to go wrong and then when it goes right it's
much more exciting."
Craig also explained how grueling chase scenes and fight
sequences high up on cranes meant the role demanded a high
level of fitness. He said: "Every day you pick up an
injury and you're battered and bruised. If you're not physically
fit then it's difficult to get through.
To answer his critics, Craig said: "I'm a Bond fan.
If I go and see a Bond movie there are certain things I
think should be in it. And they're there. We've got them
in spades. Nobody knows more than I do how important this
is, and it's my job to get it right."
Key players in the production team came out fighting in
Weekly report in an attempt to lay various rumours to
rest once and for all. "No, his teeth didn't get knocked
out," says director Martin Campbell, "What happened
was that one of his caps came loose while we were filming
in Prague. A local dentist came to the set, put a bit of
glue on it, and that was that. The whole thing took 10 minutes."
Above: Bond gets briefed by M.
Above: Bond waits for the arrival
of his second target which will assure him his "00"
status in the film's pre-title sequence.
"That story about the stick shift was ludicrous,"
adds Barbara Broccoli, "Everybody drives a stick in England.
You have to be able to in order to get an unrestricted license
over there. The tabloids come up with these stupid stories. Almost
everything they've written about this movie has been wrong."
"It's not a prequel or a period piece or anything like that
— it's set today, right now" explains Broccoli. "Daniel
Craig is an incredibly funny, charming, sexy guy. Fans are going
to love him — they just don't know him yet."
"The way we look at it, it's Classic Bond",
explained Broccoli (pictured opposite) in another interview
& Mail. "Casino Royale is the definitive Bond
story. It was always an ambition of [Cubby Broccoli &
Harry Saltzman] to be able to make this story, but sadly,
they were never able to. So when it finally became available
to us, we leapt at the chance. I like to think that I'm
doing this for my dad".
"James Bond is a very dark, complex character the
way he was originally conceived by Fleming," she notes.
"So this film is going to explore elements of the character
that have not been seen before. It will really surprise
people when they see it."
Co-producer Michael G. Wilson then discussed the change
in tact from the hugely successful "Die Another Day",
which netted nearly $450 million at the global box-office.
"Well, I think we've seen Bond films go through different
periods of change," offered Wilson. "In the 1970s,
they got bigger and more fantastic until we reached Moonraker
 in outer space. And we realized that it was going
in the wrong direction and we brought it back to basics
with For Your Eyes Only ."
"And what we saw with Die Another Day is that we got to the
same point," continues Wilson. "We started getting too
high in the sky -- outer space, invisible cars -- the technology
began to overwhelm the story and the characters. We felt it was
very important to bring it back down to earth."
"Whether Casino Royale will make more money or less money,
I don't know," he says. "But because we needed to re-energize
ourselves, it's going to be a better film than we would've made
had we just gone along on the track. Because after Die Another Day,
we were confronted with a situation where we said, 'We'll have a
guaranteed winner if we just do the same thing over again.' But
I think we would've lost a lot of what we think is important [to
Above: Bond tracks down
his next lead via the MI6 network.
of Ian Fleming's 1953 James Bond novel "Casino
Royale" will be issued this year to coincide with the movie
of the same name being released in theatres. As the movie is heavily
based on Fleming's first literary adventure, a new novelisation
of the film will not be produced, especially as there is no continuation
author currently assigned to the literary Bond series. All four
of Pierce Brosnan's cinematic outings included a novelisation, initially
by John Gardner for "GoldenEye", and subsequently by Raymond
Instead, Fleming's original novel will be reprinted with new
cover art, likely to tie-in with movie poster art starring Daniel
Craig as 007. The 240 page paperback book will be published in
the USA by Penguin for release on 31st October 2006, two weeks
before the film opens in theatres around the world. The book will
retail for $7.99
in the USA. There are currently no details available on the
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.
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Royale Production Diary #1
Royale Release Dates
Royale Press Conference Video
Craig Press Conference
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