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Let Bond Be Bond: What We Want from Bond 23

This post is part of James Bond January, being organised by the wonderful Paragraph Films. I will have reviews of all twenty-two official Bond films going on-line over the next month, and a treat or two every once in a while.

The 23rd Bond movie had its release date confirmed as 9th November 2012, putting an end to the perpetual development hell that it seemed trapped in. With Oscar-winner Sam Mendes in the director’s chair, there would seem to be very little to worry about, but I thought – nonetheless – I’d collect some thoughts on what I’d like to see in the 23rd instalment of the long-running film series.

Shaken... but not stirred...

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In Defense of the Sam Mendes and Bond 23 Rumours…

There’s been a lot of to-ing and fro-ing on the next Bond film, provisionally titled as Bond 23. This week has been a bonaza of news about the project, which has been slowly taking shape through dribs and drabs of information. On one hand, we had the official confirmation of what everybody really knew (but it’s nice to know for sure): the movie won’t get made until someone buys MGM or the rights. The other tidbit was much more interesting. Bond has a director: Sam Mendes. I think it’s a great idea.

Things at MGM are so bad that Bond can't even afford dry-cleaning...

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Michael Sheen to clean up as Blofeld?

I have to admit, the news that Paul Haggis would be replaced by Peter Morgan on writing duties at Bond 23 (because we don’t have a cool/confusing/pretentious title yet) was a little bit of a surprise, but not too much. The producers reportedly also attempted to coax Danny Boyle into directing the film, so I guess they’re trying one rung down on this year’s Oscar-nominees list. I’m not sure if that’s a good sign though. Don’t get me wrong, Morgan is amazing and I eagerly anticipate The Special Relationship (though I think he picked the wrong President), but I’m worried that the movies are creeping toward pretention. I like Casino Royale, it cleared away nearly forty years of rubble the franchise had accumulated – but it seems the producers picker up on the wrong message from its success. The Quantum of Solice didn’t give us back-to-basics Bond as much as it gave us a British Jason Bourne. Still, regardless of my feelings about behind the scenes, I am somewhat excited by the Michael Sheen as Blofeld rumours that are cropping up.

Isn't he just Darling... oh wait, wrong member of government...

Isn't he just Darling... oh wait, wrong member of government...

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