Caution: Excerpts from this interview contain language that my be offensive to some readers.
The notoriously candid Pierce Brosnan has given an in-depth interview to the notoriously open Playboy Magazine, and the result is both oddly un-revelatory and shocking. What follows are excerpts from the Bond related sections of the interview in which Brosnan continues expressing bitterness about his tenure as James Bond, and even extends his wrath to former Bond star George Lazenby.
Playboy: Where you ready to step down as James Bond?
Brosnan: It would have been a trip to do another one. I prepared myself to do it. I psyched myself. But they have set sail. The made their decision. They want to reinvent it and make it a period piece. The want to get a younger guy.
“I’ll always be known as Bond, but now I don’t have the responsibility of being an ambassador for a small country ruled by a character.”
Playboy: How does it feel to be told that you’re too old?
Brosnan: It was kind of shocking to have ageism come on me when I was just getting started. It’s shocking to be told that you’re too old, that you’re past your sell-by date.
Playboy: Do we detect some bitterness?
Brosnan: It’s bloody frustrating that the f*ckers pulled the rug when they did. It was like, “Come on, we’re family here. You talk about being a family. You know my late wife; you know my family now. Yet I get a call from my agents at five in the afternoon in the Bahamas, and I hear that you’ve shut down negotiations because you don’t know how, where or which way to go and that you’ll call me next Friday?” What can I say? It’s cold, it’s juvenile, and it shouldn’t be done like that, not after 10 years and four films.
When asked how he assessed his four Bond films (GoldenEye,1995; Tomorrow Never Dies, 1997; The Word Is Not Enough, 1999; Die Another Day, 2002) the actor responded:
Brosnan: All the movies made money. Creatively, maybe, they could have been stronger, but they were Bond movies, and they advanced a certain degree out of the dolddrums where they had been. They were tricky to do. I never really felt as as though I nailed it. As soon as they put me into a suit and tie and gave me those lines of dialogue, I felt restricted. It was like the same old same old. I was doing Roger Moore doing Sean Connery doing George Lazenby. I felt as if I were doing a period piece dusted off. They never really took the risks they should have. [...] It would have been great to light up and smoke cigarettes, for instance. It would have been great to have the killing a little more real and not wussed down. My boys watch the movies on DVD, so I see them from time to time. I see myself with nowhere to go, and it’s all rather bland.
Brosnan went on to expresses his disappointment that the sex scenes in his Bond films where never steamy enough for his own tastes (“It would have been great to have sex scenes that were right on the button.”). When asked who would be his ideal Bond Girl, Brosnan had this to say:
Brosnan: Monica Bellucci is a ravishing beauty — a gorgeous, gorgeous woman. She screen-tested to be a Bond girl a while back and the fools said no. Teri Hatcher stole the day instead.
Asked about the reports of his clashes with Teri Hatcher in the set of Tomorrow Never Dies, Pierce explained:
Brosnan: The Teri Hatcher incident was blown out of proportion. She was late to set because she was newly pregnant. I didn’t know that until the end of the day. [...] I was vexed because I had a call time of six or seven AM, and we didn’t do any work until three or four in the afternoon. No one told me her situation until afterwards. By that time I’d already shot my mount off and cussed and moaned and groaned. That’s all it was, a storm in a teacup.
The most bizarre part of the interview is when the topic of former Bond star George Lazenby arose. This has garnered some outside press attention, so here is the Q&A in it’s entirety.
Playboy December 2005 issue
Playboy: How about George Lazenby, who played 007 in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service? He once said about you, “If he walked into a room, I doubt anyone would look up. But this is the 1990s and women want a man who shows his feminine side. Pierce definitely has that.”
Brosnan: George is just an angry, old, pissed-off guy. He was never an actor but some pissed-off Aussie who doesn’t know how to show his feminine side. I met him, and he’s got that kind of brittle edge to him. People want to take swipes. I have no idea why.
Brosnan went on to suggest Clive Owen would make a good James Bond, but when the conversation turned to his new film, The Matador, Brosnan once again let his fury fly:
Brosnan: I would like to see this film be a glorious poke in the eye to certain parties and to be a success and have other glorious roles follow in it’s wake. [...] When the f*ckers try and hem you in with Bond, it’s great to come back with The Matador. It’s great to say, “F*ck you, a**hole. F*ck you who wouldn’t give me a job. F*ck you who thought I was some wuss. F*uck you, who thought I was a pretty boy. F*ck you, who thought anything of me without even knowing me or giving me the chance. F*ck you.” But when you go around with all that inside you all the time, you end up completely mangled so you have to let it go.
To read the entire Pierce Brosnan Playboy interview, purchase the December issue of Playboy Magazine. To subscribe, visit www.playboy.com (Caution: this link/website features frontpage nudity).