1. Charlie Higson Talks Young Bond And Beyond

    By Devin Zydel on 2008-09-01

    Young Bond author Charlie Higson was a featured guest today on the BBC 6 Music show Nemone.

    Speaking about his latest addition to the popular series, By Royal Command (due for publication this Wednesday in the UK) and the upcoming SilverFin graphic novel adaptation, Higson also gave fans some details about what is in store for the future.

    Bringing up one of By Royal Command‘s locations in Kitzbuel, Austria, Higson said: ‘Well, I went there. The thing about Ian Fleming was that he used to write about things he was passionate about and places he loved and he had spent alot of time in his life in Kitzbuel. And it was an important time in his life, when he was sort of getting his head together. And he loved it there and learned to ski there, which is why there’s always so much skiing in the books and films. You think of James Bond and you think of skiing…’

    On the topic of romance and Young Bond, he said: ‘I’ve pushed it a little bit more in each of the books, expecting complaints, but they generally accept it. From watching the movies, I mean, he is James Bond, and he does do a certain amount of kissing.’

    ‘The essence of the book is that James Bond does fall in love for the first time. Although, I hasten to add, since alot of children are listening, don’t worry, alot of people still get killed.’

    Higson then moved on to the long-awaited SilverFin graphic novel. ‘Yeah, we’ve got the first Young Bond graphic novel book coming out in the beginning of October, which I’m really excited about, because I’ve always been a huge comics fan.’

    When asked what sparked this new venture for the Young Bond series, he said: ‘Well, we always wanted to do as much as we could with Young Bond and expand it and see what sort of other areas we could go into, that’s why we’re doing this online game.’

    ‘From the start, we had this fantastic comic book artist called Kev Walker who was doing illustrations for us and for the website and some of the American covers. And we just thought, wouldn’t it be great to do a full-on comic book and use his illustrations. And he’s just been doing so much work on it, which is why it’s coming out about a year too late. But it’s beautiful, it’s full-colour throughout, Kev and I have done the adaptation together, although he’s done most of it.’

    I’ve been very involved,’ Higson continues, ‘and Kev, he’s used to doing comic books where the writer will come in and you say “Do this, that, and a picture…”, but I’ve always thought I know better how to do this. So the great thing is it’s been designed to work visually, so the visuals come first.’

    When the subject of Young Bond on the big screen came up, Higson called the idea ‘complicated.’

    ‘You know, with screen rights, and also trying to find a boy with the charisma of Sean Connery. It’s very difficult to get good child actors, which is why Tolkien was so clever in The Lord of the Rings, where the hobbits are essentially adults, but any child coming into it thinks of them as children.’

    He continues: ‘When these books first started, there was a rumour that went around and became quite well established that Orlando Bloom was going to play Young Bond. And I thought that they’re going to have to go and do what they did with the hobbits and have him go around on his knees.’

    On what follows after the publication of By Royal Command, Higson said: ‘I’m working on a non-Bond book at the moment. A new series of action-adventure books set in the contemporary world, which is basically 28 Days Later for kids. Basically, everyone over the age of 14 has been wiped out by a disease, so some kids have taken over London. But, it turns out that not everyone has been taken out by the disease…’

    Visit Nemone on BBC 6 Music to listen to the Charlie Higson segment of the show.

    As always, stay tuned to the main page for all the latest Young Bond news.