Welcome to the June 2005 CBn Dossier, a wrap-up of all the 007 news and rumours for the month (and if you read carefully, a scoop or two). In this month’s column, we take a look at all the latest on Charlie Higson’s next Young Bond novel, the arrival of ‘GoldenEye: Rogue Agent’ on Nintendo DS, CBn’s evening with George Lazenby and more. Stromberg is a busy man – his time is precious – but today, Heiko Baumann delivers this month’s CBn Dossier.
CBn kicked off the month with another presentation of great fan fiction, the story collection Measure for Measure, as a result of CBn’s short story contest from earlier this year. The jury, consisting of Fenna Geelhoed (Joyce Carrington), Christopher Davies (Hawkeye), Thomas Clink (clinkeroo), Evan Willnow (Mister Asterix), and Devin Zydel (Qwerty), considered the following entries to be worthy: ‘Flight of the Executioner‘ by Fraser Lomas, ‘The Rough with the Smooth’ by Andrew Hixson, ‘Measure for Measure’ by Mark Zahn, and ‘No Reason To Die’ by Matt Kriter. Thanks again to all participiants and the jury.
The PDF file can be downloaded here. Artistical merits for typesetting and creating an outstanding dustjacket in the tradition of Richard Chopping go to CBn’s Mister Asterix, Evan Willnow.
After the success of Charlie Higson‘s first Young Bond novel SilverFin, more and more details on his second volume (release date Jan. ’06) emerged. In a Q&A session by CBBC’s Newsround, Higson revealed (answering to a question by CBn’s Chris Wright (Righty007)) that the working title of this is still “Double M”, referring to the symbol of a secret criminal organisation, but as a publishing title it is “not considered racy enough”. Also, YB2 will hint at the significance of the number ‘seven’ in Bond‘s life. Read more details (also on why the book was set in Sardinia) here. IFP has reported that SilverFin has sold 50,000 copies until now and will be published in several countries. CBn was able to unveil the cover of the German version, which will go by the name of Stille Wasser sind tödlich (Silent Waters are Deadly). Also, the YB2 manuscript has been delivered by Charlie Higson, and IFP is not too shy to claim that it’s just fantastic.
In the sector of secondary literature, John Griswold’s Ian Fleming’s James Bond: Annotations and Chronologies has caused a lot of controversial discussions among fans, especially when it comes to his chronologies. But as CBn’s Charles Helfenstein (doublenoughtspy) pointed out in his review “Whether you agree with his timeline or not, it is the first time such an exercise has appeared in print (others have appeared online), and since Fleming would often contradict himself from book to book, it’s quite a challenge to even attempt such a feat.” John Griswold (as ianfleming1) himself showed more than willing to discuss this topic with CBn members in the forums and give even more insight on this project in The John Griswold CBn Interview.
And if it weren’t enough, the next James Bond book is already in the making: Death Rays, Jet Packs, Stunts, and Supercars: The Fantastic Physics of Film’s Most Celebrated Secret Agent by Barry Parker will examine the importance of science and technology in the James Bond movies. The book will be released in October 2005.
Meanwhile, James Bond continuation author Raymond Benson gets a special treatment in Japan: the Kagawa Prefecture has been promoting a cinematic version of Benson’s last 007 novel The Man With The Red Tatoo for a long time, as most of this book takes place on Naoshima Island in Kagawa prefecture. As a result of this activities, the 007 The Man With The Red Tattoo Museum will open on July 24th in Naoshima.
For the upcoming EA game From Russia With Love, Amazon.co.uk has listed a release date of 28 October for three console versions, Microsoft Xbox, Nintendo GameCube, Sony PlayStation 2. This date is still to be considered tentative. Rely on CBn to report the definite release date as soon as confirmation is in.
In the meantime, EA has provided us with some exclusive screenshots of the ‘Hedgemaze’ level. This is the first level that has been lifted directly from the original 1963 movie, recreating the pre-titles sequence. Together with these screenshots, CBn was able to unveil an interesting piece of news: this location will be known as OCTOPUS hideout instead of SP.E.C.T.R.E. Island, according to EA because of still existing legal issues with the use of the name SP.E.C.T.R.E. Credit for this goes again to Kevin McClory.
Furthermore, johnbarry.org.uk has reported that Bond veteran Vic Flick, guitarist on the original “James Bond Theme” and a number of early Bond movie soundtracks, will return to contribute to the game’s score by Chris Lennertz.
After its release on Xbox, GameCube and PS2 last year, EA’s GoldenEye: Rogue Agent is now also available for Nintendo DS. This dual-screen (DS) version features a varity of new additions, such as a ‘Virtual Training’ mode and a unique multiplayer mode. The release date for this was June 15th in the U.S. and will be July 1st in the U.K.
CBn visits Club Aston
A definite highlight, not only in the past month of June, but also in the history of CBn, was a visit at Galpin Ford’s brand new 2.5 million dollar Aston Martin lounge and showroom in Van Nuys, California. CBn Team Members Athena Stamos (Athena007), Charlie Axworthy (Bryce003) and John Cox (zencat) followed a personal invitation to visit this place, which is not open to the general public. The extraordinary day ended with a ride for the Team in the Aston Martin DB9 and CBn itself becoming part of the unique Club Aston experience. Thanks again to all who made this possible.
Another unique experience were the events “James Bond: A Celebration” and “An Evening With George Lazenby” which were held on June 10th at Pinewood Studios by Bondstars.com. Among the 100 Bond fans taking part in this were several CBners, including team member Charles Helfenstein (doublenoughtspy) who delivered an amazing report on this. The day started with a guided tour through Pinewood Studios, which brought up memories to many Bond movies that were shot here. After a Q&A session with a number of Bond stars, the group had the opportunity of an On Her Majesty’s Secret Service screening in Pinewood’s Theatre 7 which an introduction by George Lazenby himself. The evening ended with a 3 course dinner and another Q&A session and discussion with George Lazenby, who announced to the audience that his wife, former tennis player Pam Shriver, is expecting twins. Congratulations.
The event was overshadowed by the loss of Michael Billington, who was expected to attend, but passed away a few days before the event on June 3rd. Word has it that no other actor was screentested more often for the role of James Bond, but also that he never really believed that he had the role at some point. He is best known among Bond fans for his role of Sergei Barsov, Major Anya Amasova’s (Triple-X) lover in The Spy Who Loved Me’s legendary pre-title sequence. Our sympathies go to his family.
All quiet on the Casino Royale front
No news on Casino Royale this month. Only a speculation on the possibility of Bond veteran stunt coordinator and 2nd unit director Vic Armstrong not joining the crew this time due to his involvement in the movie Shooting Stars, which he is likely to direct. Apart from this, not even new names have been thrown in the game by British tabloids. Nothing. Nada. Zip.
Quiet. Suspiciously quiet? A calm before the storm? Highly likely, but no one is able to tell when it’s going to end. Frankly said, the CBn Team enjoys having a little bit of breathing space, as it gives time to recreate and prepare not only for the forthcoming Casino Royale coverage, but also for the celebration of CBn’s 005th Anniversary in July.
You read it on CBn first…
As previously speculated, CBn can now confirm that Phil Meheux is locked in as Casino Royale’s director of photography.
Also, despite reports, Casino Royale will film briefly in England before moving to Prague for studio work and South Africa for location shooting.
Until next time…