The "Casino Royale" production team have moved to Italy for the final leg of location shooting. MI6 rounds up all the latest goings on from the set...

Casino Royale Production Diary #8
31st May 2006

The "Casino Royale" production team have moved to Italy for the final leg of location shooting. MI6 rounds up all the latest goings on from the set.

Ciao, Mr Bond
Production wrapped in the Czech Republic last week, and the team moved to Menaggio, Italy for the final leg of location shooting before the filming finally wraps in Pinewood, UK.

On Sunday 28th May, the production team arrived in Italy, with local papers reporting that the filming will cost 2 million Euros over four days and will involve around 250 people behind the scenes and 50 in front of the cameras.

Director Martin Campbell completed inspections of the locations on Monday, with the production making use of a helicopter to prepare for shooting.

Above: Lake Como, Italy

The first scene shot on location at Lake Como took place on On Tuesday 30th May, with the crew arriving at 5:30am and the principal actors an hour later. Some scenes were filmed at Villa La Gaeta Di San Siro.

According the local press, the location is being used to double for a clinic where Bond is recovering from his ordeal with Le Chiffre, as in Ian Fleming's original novel. Filming is set to continue in the gardens until Friday. Production will then move to Villa Balbianello di Lenn and 'romantic' scenes will be filmed on the Lario river.

The cast are reported to be staying at the Lario hotel, where they remained yesterday, whereas the crew are residing at the Grand Hotel of Tremezzo. Production will move to Venice next week, and then finally to Pinewood studios where the climactic action sequences from the film will be shot.

Above: An Italian paparazzi shot of the crew preparing at Lake Como.


Press Quotes
Craig spoke to `The Insider` during a Czech Republic press junket on May 22nd. "Each day brings something new, whether or not we're hanging 150 feet up from a crane or we're doing a scene in a lobby of a hotel, I'm incredibly positive. I think we're making a great movie here." As for the media response, he says, "I knew that was going to happen. You roll with it." Of course, it helps that he has the backing of several former Bonds, including Pierce. "I've met Pierce on a number of occasions, we've had a few drinks, and he's been incredibly encouraging. I think his words were, 'Go for it.'"

New Bond girl Eva Green told reporters, "A lot of Bond girls are sexy and unreal, but Vesper is more realistic and more human. I had a chance to read the script before the screen test and I really fell in love with the character."

Left: Daniel Craig was spotted by paparazzi sporting a smart navy blue three-piece suit... and a mega submachine gun complete with silencer. Whilst toting 007's latest weapon, to be used in one of the film's final action sequences now filming in Italy, Craig was seen shuffling the tunes on his iPod.

You Only Star Twice
Eunice Gayson, Martine Beswick and Maud Adams are about to have another member join their exclusive club of Bond Girls who have appeared in more than one movie - Tsai Chin.

Tsai first appeared as Chinese agent Ling in the 1967 Sean Connery outing "You Only Live Twice". As the only Bond girl who has ever "killed" James Bond (in the film's pre-titles sequence set in Hong Kong), Tsai's return in "Casino Royale" is in a very different guise.

This time around, Tsai will play Madame Wu, a player at the high-stakes poker game hosted by villain Le Chiffre at the Casino Royale. It is rumoured that Tsai will have a line in the film when a group of the players order drinks following Bond's request for his Vesper martini.

Born in Shanghai, China in 1937, Tsai was 30 when she appeared in "You Only Live Twice". Since then, she has appeared in several "Fu Manchu" movies and appearances in notable TV shows and small roles in major films such as "The Interpreter" and "Memoirs of a Geisha".

Now 69 years old, Tsai's appearance in "Casino Royale" will be a record for any female character in the series, with a gap spanning 39 years.

Above: Tsai Chin as Agent Ling in "You Only Live Twice" (1967)

Production Update
In other production related news, an NSPCC charity Ebay auction for a visit to the set of Casino Royale closed this month. The final bid came in at £5,101 (around $9,500 USD) and the winner can look forward to a unique opportunity for 2 people to get behind the scenes and spend a day on the set of the new film, including a guided tour of the stages and workshops at Pinewood Studios in Buckinghamshire.

Sunseeker, the famous boat builder, reported on their website this week that their Predator 108 will appear in the film. Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli, producers of Casino Royale, have confirmed that the latest 007 production will again feature Sunseeker motoryachts. It is the third time in succession Sunseeker motoryachts have featured alongside the world-famous secret agent and the company’s greatest involvement in a 007 film production to date. A number of Sunseeker motoryachts have been filmed on locations from the Bahamas to central Europe. The motoryachts were also filmed in the studio, including a sequence involving the company’s high performance XS 2000 and a sea plane. The film features Sunseeker’s stunning Predator 108, the largest yet in the Predator range and one of the company’s most impressive performers, achieving speeds of up to 50mph.

Eon Productions issued a press release to MI6 confirming the injury of two 2nd unit crew members while filming at Dunsfold Park aerodrome near Cranleigh, Surrey. “We regret to report that yesterday, whilst preparing the 2nd unit filming location in the UK, two of our construction workers were injured whilst dismantling a lighting rig. Both men were taken to a nearby hospital where one was released with some bruising. The other has been kept in for treatment but is in a stable condition. The main unit is currently shooting in the Czech Republic and Italy and will be returning to the UK later in June.”

The new moody Casino Royale Double-Sided Advance poster appeared on Ebay for sale last week. The poster is now available at a reasonable price courtesy of Movie Market UK and USA. The 69x104 cm / 27x41 inch poster features Daniel Craig sat at a casino table resting his hand on a gun. Unlike the GoldenEye teaser poster, we are treated to a full shot of the new James Bond.
Buy Now - MI6 USA price $24.99
Buy Now - MI6 UK price £14.99

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.

The film also stars Judi Dench, Eva Green, Mads Mikkelsen, Jeffrey Wright, Giancarlo Giannini, Caterina Murino, Simon Abkarian, Tobias Menzies, Ivana Milicevic, Clemens Schik, Ludger Pistor, Claudio Santamaria and Isaach de Bankole.

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