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  1. The CBn Dossier, December '05

    Matt Weston

    Welcome to the December 2005 CBn Dossier, a wrap-up of all the 007 news and rumours for the month. In this month’s column, we brace ourselves for an onslaught of news as Casino Royale is set to begin filming, we take a look at the latest Young Bond developments (including the release of Blood Fever) and we examine the news that EA’s next 007 game will be based on the next Bond film!

    This month’s CBn Dossier is delivered by CBn’s Matt Weston (who apologises for the fact it’s three days late due to some New Year’s Eve, ahem, festivities). Enjoy!

    The calm before the storm

    What should have been the last quiet month before Casino Royale turned out to be not so quiet after all.

    With the next 007 flick set to begin filming in the New Year, fans can expect an onslaught of Bond news over the coming weeks. Of course the most anticipated announcement is that of casting. With a new James Bond locked in, fans (and the media) have now turned their attention to the supporting cast, including Bond Girl, Vesper Lynd; Angelina Jolie, Charlize Theron and, most recently, Naomi Watts, are the names that have been tossed around this past month. British pop singer, Seal, has also been rumoured to play a henchman named “Solari”. Hmm.

    Speaking of Casino Royale‘s cast, the two confirmed cast members (007 and “M”) have been dropping hints as to what we can expect from the new movie. Dame Judi Dench gave a timeframe on her future as “M” and solved one 007 mystery when she revealed why she seemed adamant that Pierce Brosnan would return as James Bond (turns out she read it in the media, took it as fact and got in a spot of trouble when she spouted off to the press accordingly! Tut-tut!). New Bond Daniel Craig, meanwhile, broke his Royale silence. In an interview with MTV, Craig revealed that Casino Royale will be “a Bond movie first and foremost”, ending speculation Sony were planning to adapt Ian Fleming’s novel as a comedic farce starring Peter Sellars, Woody Allen and Orson Welles. Pity.

    CBn was also invited back to Club Aston for an exclusive look at what is expected to be Bond’s new car in Casino Royale. If anyone wants to get me a late Christmas present, I have an idea…

    Oh, and German paper Mitteldeutsche Zeitung claim location scouting is taking place at a series of impressive locales throughout the Czech Republic. With Michael G. Wilson claiming Casino Royale will be a location-heavy flick, I’d say here is a good place to start!

    Meanwhile, congratulations are in order for ex-007, Pierce Brosnan, who recently earned himself a Best Actor Golden Globe nomination for his role in The Matador. Miramax have held back on the film’s release to have it fall in “Oscar season”, so who knows how far this indie film could take Pierce.

    ‘Casino Royale’ offers gaming

    Speaking of Casino Royale, CBn revealed early in December that the next Bond flick will serve as the basis for EA’s next Bond game, expected to hit current-gen consoles.

    EA’s Casino Royale will be a third-person title, akin to Everything Or Nothing and From Russia With Love. The game is already in pre-production and will feature the likeness of Daniel Craig (and presumably whoever else is cast). Predictably, the game is expected to hit shelves coinciding with the release of the filmic version late this year.

    In other gaming news, Sean Callery’s score to Everything Or Nothing is now available to purchase. And the PSP adaption of From Russia With Love is up for pre-order at Amazon.com.

    Young Bonding again

    Charlie Higson’s second Young Bond novel is just a couple of days away from its formal release, despite Amazon.co.uk letting a few copies slip through in mid-December.

    Expect the Young Bond marketing machine to crank up very soon, with a number of very cool promotional tricks planned to market James’ second teenage adventure. Most exciting is the competition due to be held on Thursday that will give 10 lucky fans the opportunity to Be Young Bond for a Day (at Eton College, no less)! The winner, as chosen by Charlie Higson and a professional stunts team, will appear as a character in not only the next Young Bond novel, but also the next Young Bond mobile phone game. It’s fantastic to see some oomph back into marketing the literary Bond!

    Author Charlie Higson will also kick off a series of promotional appearances over the next couple of weeks at Ottakar’s and Heffers stores in the UK. Any chance you’d swing by Australia, Charlie?

    Meanwhile, the U.S. edition of Blood Fever has been delayed an extra month and will now hit shelves in June.

    Early copies of the book to slip through have confirmed Book 3 is due for release in January 2007.

    Also this month, signed stock of Kate Westbrook’s The Moneypenny Diaries: Guardian Angel has emerged and is available to purchase from Amazon.co.uk. Get in quickly, as this offer is unlikely to last!

    Bits ‘n’ pieces

    A series of exciting events were announced in December, including the inaugural Boats of Bond exhibit at the New York National Boat Show. Amongst the Bond boats to put in an appearance are Blofeld’s bath-o-sub from Diamonds Are Forever and the Q-Boat from The World Is Not Enough. As if that’s not enough, the Boat Show will hold “Bond Day” this Thursday (4 January), where attendees who come dressed as 007, a Bond Girl or villain receive a discount off entry and will be in the running for some special prizes.

    The UK charity, Little Havens Childrens Hospice will host a Diamonds Are Forever-themed ball on 18 March, 2006 at Braxted Park. Tickets are available now, with all proceeds going towards a very worthwhile cause.

    BBC Radio 4 will broadcast a brand new radio play entitled From Father With Love based on the relationship Ian Fleming had with his son, Caspar. To be aired 13 January, 2006, this sounds like a must-listen for Fleming aficionados.

    And former Bond author, Raymond Benson filed a report with CBn about his promotional trip to Italy to market the first of the Italian re-issues of his 007 novels.

    A personal note

    There comes a time in every Bond fan’s life when he has to jetset around the world. For me, that time has come, and I am stepping aside from CommanderBond.net to live the high life throughout Europe over the next year (and who knows, maybe visiting a Casino Royale location or two!).

    Thanks to all those who have offered company, leant support and listened to my undying (and totally justified) love for Die Another Day.

    2006 is set to be a very exciting year for 007 fans – – enjoy it!

    Ciao for now…

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    Matt Weston @ 2006-01-02
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