"Casino Royale" director Martin Campbell delves into the production details following the Daniel Craig press conference last week...

Campbell On Casino Royale
18th October 2005

Following Friday's press conference in London, director Martin Campbell gave an inteview to Latino Review to explain the situation surrounding the casting of Daniel Craig as the sixth James Bond 007 and various production issues.

So is this you're new habit of yours? Breaking in the new Bond?
Well the reason I'm doing Bond is because it's the first book, Casino Royale is the first book...

I've read the novel and I wanted to ask you...
I bet there's a scene in you want to talk about.
What? The genitals being cutting off?
That's going to be a tough one. I think I'll do it in close up. (Laughs) I think there will a lot of woman that will love that scene. But what's interesting about this is Bond when he's starting out. He's just got his 00's stripes and he's not the perfect Bond at all. I mean he makes mistakes, he's a little raw, he's a little arrogant, he's a bit of a loose cannon, but by the end of the movie of course he becomes the perfect machine Bond that we know.

Above: Martin Campbell

Do you think the Bourne films have an affect or are going to affect the James Bond films?
I don't think so. The truth about the Bourne films, which I love by the way and I think Matt Damon is fantastic in them, but that's a man who is hunted by his past, someone who can't remember his past, he's always on the run and is a very serious kind of...he's just focused on trying to find he's past.

Where as Bond I think has a lot of elements. He has a sense of humor, he's a great womanizer, he's very attractive, he's a great poker player or card player, he's a gambler. He's all of those things plus he's deadly. So he has all those elements, now that's something Bourne doesn't have.

Like in this new Bond (film) and in the book Casino Royale, there are no gadgets.
No there is no gadgets.

And Bourne doesn't use gadgets.
No he doesn't, what he uses is his head. And you're probably right about Bourne and Bond to a certain extent. But Bond will make mistakes these guys aren't perfect when they start off.

Above: Daniel Craig with Martin Campbell.

Is the film going to be more of an adult prospect type of film?
No it will be a PG 13. The way the violence is done and everything else there is no point in doing Bond if going to be anything more than a PG 13 because its not...I don't the audience is...I think the major audience for Bond that has to be added is kids. I think kids have to go and see it.

Now you're going in a different direction with this new Bond, no smoking, no gadgets. What direction do you want to go with this Bond?
Connery never smoked, did he?

In Dr No he did.
In Dr No, that's true. He certainly wont smoke in this film because I think it would be irresponsible. I think kids see this stuff and then they go to the toilet to have a quick cigarette. I think morally that's wrong regardless if the character smokes or not. I mean in the book he smokes 70 a day, it's amazing. And he drinks quiet heavily too. The book is so old fashioned but it's very interesting and again the violence I've got to be careful of because of the kids who are going to want to see this movie.

Do you think you can duplicate the success of Pierce Brosnan with Daniel Craig?
Well I hope so. The truth is that I think with the style of movie that Pierce, he's last one for example I think with the gadgets, the invincible car the huge sort of ice palaces, the kind of water skiing off or should I say snow boarding...I mean I just thought it got preposterous and then finally the 747 going down in a massive amount flames that goes on forever. I think they got to a point where you couldn't go any more than that. It was getting to ridiculous.

Why is Daniel Craig the best choice to play Bond?
Because first of all he's a terrific actor, and I think it's on Casino Royale were Fleming always said he looked like Hoagy Carmichael, which is a very interesting and he is a very interesting looking guy and I think he has all the attributes to make a much grittier and tougher Bond.

How close is the film going to mirror the book?
The second half of the book is very close. The first half isn't and when you read you'll understand why. It's because it's set in the Cold War and the organizations the Russian secret service they have a man in France who they send money to in order to disrupt the union, its very much about the Cold War. It was written in 1953 so obviously that's changed because there is no Cold War. But the rest is going to be pretty much intact, The whole game takes place; Le Chiffre is the bad guy, your genital whacking scene that all remains, so the last two thirds of the movie will be like the book. And the Bond will fall in love with Vesper Lynd as he does in the book. This is the last book that they are filming because they have done all of them.

How much leeway do you have in this film? And how much involvement is the Broccoli family in it?
Well they're (Broccoli) great actually. I did GoldenEye and they pretty much gave me my head on that we all incorporated on the script, we all liked the script. This time we definitely wanted to go back to more realistic Bond. More like From Russia With Love, more kind of creditable if you will and that's the directive and that's why we've cast Daniel Craig. I think it definitely needs a change in direction.

There were a lot of rumors on who was going to play Bond and what not. Who actually was in contention for the role?
We had that very young chap named Henry Cavill who was really good but I think at the end he was too young, he's 22. But Henry believe me he is going to be a big talent, very good looking, very strong physically and a good actor but he's too young for this Bond basically that was it. When he gets a little more acting experience under his belt he'll be terrific.

Above: Daniel Craig as James Bond

Was he the only on in the running for the role?
He was the only serious one in the running, yeah.

Cause there were rumors of Hugh Jackman turning down the role and Eric Bana and so on.
Well Hugh Jackman and Eric Bana were never approached. Those were just all rumors.

So was Clive Owen ever approached?
No he was never approached, I mean the press talks about but I don't remember ever having a conversation about Clive Owen or the other names you mentioned.

Now the novel there is now Moneypenny or Q, will they still be in the film.
Well there's no Moneypenny or Q in this film.

Will M be a female or Male?
I'm not telling you. (Laughs)

Visit Latino Review for the complete interview.

"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 November 17th 2006, distributed by Columbia Pictures. British actor Daniel Craig will James Bond, the sixth actor cast as 007. Stay tuned to MI6 for the latest and most accurate coverage of Casino Royale.

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