To the media wags who have criticized Daniel Craig’s casting as James Bond in Casino Royale, director Martin Campbell’s message is clear:
“He’s a very gritty, interesting-looking guy, very handsome in a different way.” -Campbell
“Wait until the movie.”
Speaking last night at the world premiere of Legend of Zorro at the Orpheum Theatre in downtown Los Angeles, Campbell said, “When I directed GoldenEye, they dumped on that even while I was shooting it, saying, ‘Give up. Bond is dead.” In England, Campbell says, “It went on and on and on.”
Campbell then elaborated on why he picked Craig:
“He’s a very gritty, interesting-looking guy, very handsome in a different way. He’s going to be a more adaptable, realistic Bond than perhaps we’ve had in the past.”
Meanwhile, former Miss Moneypenny actress Samantha Bond has chimed in with her opinion of the new 007. “As for Daniel as Bond, I think it is an absolutely brilliant choice. He is butch, male, attractive and a bloody good actor. He was by far the most plausible choice.”
While the media has characterized online Bond fans as universally rejecting Craig, a poll here on CommanderBond.net — the largest James Bond fan forum on the internet — shows that 60% of fans favor Craig; 28% do not; and 12% elect to take Campbell’s advice and will “wait and see.”
Casino Royale will be the 21st James Bond film produced by EON Productions. The MGM/Columbia Pictures production begins shooting in January and is due for release worldwide on November 17, 2006. It will be filmed in the Czech Republic, the Bahamas, Italy and the UK.
Martin Campbell has given a terrific exclusive interview to Latino Review in which he talks more about his new Zorro film, Daniel Craig as Bond, and next year’s Casino Royale.