Director Marc Forster and writer Paul Haggis discuss the status of the 22nd James Bond film at the Los Angeles Film Festival...

Writer & Director Discuss Bond 22
5th July 2007

The Los Angeles Film Festival event last week was a meeting of minds for the 22nd James Bond film due out on 7th November 2008. Both the recently announced director Marc Forster and returning writer Paul Haggis were in town for the festival, and spoke to the press and fellow movie makers about Daniel Craig's second outing as 007. In separate interviews at the festival's Coffee Talk forum, Forster and Haggis discussed their respective workloads and how Bond 22 is shaping up.

Forster is not known for directing big action-packed blockbusters, but when asked whether this would be an issue for Bond 22, he said "I've been trying to look into it for a while and been looking for the right project, I just haven't found it until now so I always had the fascination. I just always enjoyed them very, very much, loved the whole Indiana Jones series, the old Bonds, all those movies."

Haggis, who directed the Oscar-winning picture "Crash" before coming onboard "Casino Royale" for a script polish, was offered the job of helming Bond 22 - but turned it down. "There are certain things you can write and there are certain things you can direct. I just felt that it takes a big commitment to direct a Bond film. It's a 120 day shoot. It's a two year commitment basically to do it. If you do that on top of writing, it's almost a three year commitment. So I just didn't want to dedicate that much time. It's going to take me six months to get the script into shape as it is. I think I'll do that and then I'll go off into the next project."

Although a mammoth 007 project is looming, both are busy completing their current projects: "The Kite Runner" for Forster and "In the Valley of Elah" for Haggis - both are directing.

Above: Daniel Craig will reprise his role as 007 in the 22nd James Bond film, with filming expected to start in December 2007 at Pinewood.

Although Haggis is still busy with "In the Valley of Elah", he said he was scheduled to work on the Bond 22 script as soon as the event wrapped at noon. Several crew members have commented that the film will be a 'direct continuation' of Casino Royale, but Haggis does not deem it so black and white. "I wouldn't describe it as such," said Haggis. "I think it's going to stand on its own although it does follow right on the heels of Casino Royale". One of his tasks is to mould cutting-edge action sequences in to a character-driven script, like the construction site chase in Casino Royale. "I didn't come up with the chase sequence in the beginning. That was Martin Campbell who came up with that and it was presented to me. But just the stairwell scene and things like that, I'd come up with, so I've got a couple of those planned."

Above: Writer Paul Haggis (left), director Marc Forster (right)

Forster explained he has not really addressed Bond 22 yet. "I'm just literally mixing The Kite Runner in July and then sometime in August or September, I start [Bond]," he said. "To be honest, I haven't put any thought because really, my mind is in The Kite Runner and scoring and finishing that up. I haven't really spent any time with that stuff. I wish I could tell you. Maybe in a later period." One of his first jobs will be to screentest the cast that will compliment Craig as 007. "Yes, I think finding Bond girls will always be an interesting task but again, not something I have dealt with at this point."