"They’ll hang us like dogs from the lampposts if we get it wrong" - director Martin Campbell speaks about casting pressure...

Casino Royale - Director Speaks
6th October 2005

Following comments made at the Paris press launch of his latest film "Legend of Zorro" (see Casino Royale Campbell Reveals More and Casino Royale October Report), director Campbell confirmed in an interview with Screen Daily the shooting plans for the film: "We’ll be shooting a little bit at Pinewood but not much. We’re going to be in Prague, maybe Italy, Bahamas and places like that. Like everybody, we’re heading off to wherever we can get a good exchange rate."

On the subject of who will play James Bond #6, Campbell reiterated, "Believe it or not, to be honest there are no front-runners at the moment. We’ve tested people and will look at those tests and see if there is anybody. It’s a tricky process."

Press and fans alike have grown increasingly frustrated on the delay in naming who will play 007 in the 21st film in the series. To help the situation, Campbell said they expect to make an annoucnement, "as soon as possible". But they are taking their time to chosose the right man, because according to Campbell, "they’ll hang us like dogs from the lampposts if we get it wrong."

Campbell also confirmed that he expects the character of James Bond to be around 28 to 30 years old in the film, which will be based heavily on Ian Fleming's debut 1953 novel.

Above: Director Martin Campbell

"Because it’s the first book, it actually has a much younger Bond, and really he’s just earned his double-O stripes and he doesn’t really become the Bond we know and love until the end of the movie", said Campbell.


As MI6 reported earlier this week, this age range probably rules out 37 year-old Daniel Craig from the running, but Campbell added, "I suppose you could certainly go for an older actor and adapt it slightly". Aside from Craig, the three other front runners include British actor Henry Cavill (22), Croatian "ER" star Goran Visnjic (33), and Australian Sam Worthington (29).

Quoting the famous observation of Fleming's character, Campbell noted, "It’s difficult to find the man that every woman wants to go to bed with and every man wants to be. It’s a tough call. And also whoever plays Bond has to do it for three movies because they are contracted for three. That’s a big commitment for actors."

Campbell and the producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli along with Sony's Amy Pascal are reported to be viewing the auditions "dispassionately" by screening the tests in a projection room in an attempt to find the best candidate.

On the subject of the tabloid press speculation, Campbell jokingly added, "They’ll say one day it’s Clive Owen and one day it’s what’s his name Cray -- Daniel Craig -- and then they’ll say Jude Law, and then suddenly there might be photographs of these people holding a gun in some awful composite photo. You’ve got to put all of that out of your head, it’s got to be the best man for the job."

"Casino Royale", the 21st James Bond film, will be directed by Martin Campbell and shooting is scheduled to commence on January 17th 2006 for release on October 19th 2006. No casting decisions have been made officially. Stay tuned to MI6 for the latest and most accurate coverage of Casino Royale.

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