Producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli discuss moving James Bond on from the events of "Casino Royale" in the new adventure...

Producing Bond 22
13th November 2008

Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli talk about how the character of James Bond has developed since the last film. “In "Casino Royale", Bond was severely emotionally wounded and he needs to find his way out of the experience he had with Vesper. Bond has a recognition that he can’t leave the service, he can’t really find love in a normal sense of the word, have a family or anything like that. He is bound to his job and it is too dangerous and violent a world to share with someone. Bond doesn’t want to be open to blackmail or put someone else at risk of being blackmailed.”

"Quantum of Solace" starts one hour after the end of "Casino Royale" and marks the first time the Bond franchise has ever filmed two films in direct sequence. Wilson comments, “We don’t think there are any rules about how the Franchise is run. We have had references to one film in another film but it seemed like the natural thing to do because there are so many unanswered questions at the end of "Casino Royale" and we think our audiences will be interested in the answers.”

The producers talk about the success of "Casino Royale" and why they felt the time was right to go back to the start of Bond’s career and introduce Daniel Craig to the role of 007. “From the first time Daniel [Craig] did the screen test for us we were confident he would be a great Bond. First of all he was handsome, very masculine and he keeps himself in tremendous physical shape – all that is prerequisite for the job - moreover, he is a great actor. That is the beginning and the end of it. He can pull it off. He is probably the best actor of his generation in Britain, if not the world, so we were very lucky that he saw himself in the role and was willing to do it. Secondly, the story was right out of Ian Fleming so it had a great structure. I think whenever you make a new film with a new Bond or are taking the film in a different direction, you are never quite sure how popular the film is going to be. Of course it is gratifying when it is popular but you just cannot know how successful it will be until it happens. Now we want to duplicate the success of "Casino Royale" and exceed it.”

Both Wilson and Broccoli enjoy working with Craig. “He is charming, funny, loyal and passionate – all of the things that you find in a great actor. Daniel really enjoys making these films, he puts his heart and soul into it and is extremely studious and serious about his work. In "Casino Royale" he was exploring the character and he has gained a lot of confidence since then, so he’s playing Bond with more confidence and an assurance that comes with that confidence. He has a creative input that we welcome, he understands the character very well and therefore, when it comes to script and matters that effect the James Bond character, he is very much involved, his contributions are very important.”

It is the first time Wilson and Broccoli have worked with the award winning director, Marc Forster, and they have been impressed with his methods. “Marc is the most prepared director we have ever worked with. He has a plan of every set and location and he works with the lighting cameraman [Roberto Schaefer] to map out every shot detailing where the camera will go for each sequence. That is all done right at the beginning of the film for the entire movie and he sticks to it. His first assistant, Michael Lerman, is likewise extremely prepared and takes the shots and puts in how much time they will take hour by hour, like the goal for each day. It is amazing to see them work together.”

The producers filmed the scenes set in Haiti and Bolivia in Panama and Chile, Wilson explains, “Panama is easy to work in – you can get to it easily, it works in the lifestyle, the people speak good English and the infrastructure is good in the country, not necessarily for filming, but every other purpose; hotels, transport etc. With this particular film we needed a couple of locations and it worked out that between Panama City and Colon we could film both Haiti and Bolivia so it seemed the most effective way to plan the picture.”

The producers explain the meaning of "Quantum of Solace" and its relevance in the script, “The title originally comes from an Ian Fleming short story and, in the context of that, it means that a relationship cannot be salvaged unless there is a ‘"Quantum of Solace"’ between the two parties. ‘Quantum’ meaning ‘measure’ and ‘solace’ meaning ‘comfort’ – so if they are not willing to share that then their relationship is not redeemable. In our case, it is a couple of things; Bond is looking for a ‘"Quantum of Solace"’ after his experiences in "Casino Royale", and ‘Quantum’ also happens to be the name of the villainous organization in the film."

Thanks to Sony Pictures Releasing UK.