Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Harvey Weinstein Says Quentin Tarantino Has Changed The Last Chapter Of 'The Hateful Eight' Harvey Weinstein Says Quentin Tarantino Has Changed The Last Chapter Of 'The Hateful Eight' Sundance Review: ‘Slow West’ Starring Michael Fassbender, Kodi Smit-McPhee & Ben Mendelsohn Sundance Review: ‘Slow West’ Starring Michael Fassbender, Kodi Smit-McPhee & Ben Mendelsohn Sundance: Keanu Reeves Opens The Door To Trouble In Teaser Trailer For Eli Roth's 'Knock Knock' Sundance: Keanu Reeves Opens The Door To Trouble In Teaser Trailer For Eli Roth's 'Knock Knock' Watch: 8-Minute Video Essay Argues Steve McQueen's 'Shame' Is Actually A Critique Of The Modern Metropolis Watch: 8-Minute Video Essay Argues Steve McQueen's 'Shame' Is Actually A Critique Of The Modern Metropolis Watch: The Tampon Scene From 'Fifty Shades Of Grey' You Won't See In The Movie Recreated With 'The Sims' Watch: The Tampon Scene From 'Fifty Shades Of Grey' You Won't See In The Movie Recreated With 'The Sims' 'Death Proof' Star Zoe Bell Leads Latest Additions To Quentin Tarantino's 'Hateful Eight' As Filming Begins 'Death Proof' Star Zoe Bell Leads Latest Additions To Quentin Tarantino's 'Hateful Eight' As Filming Begins Ranked From Best To Worst: Every Sundance Dramatic Grand Jury Prize Winner Ranked From Best To Worst: Every Sundance Dramatic Grand Jury Prize Winner Watch: 'Saturday Night Live' Sketch 'Fanatic' Written & Directed By Paul Thomas Anderson And Starring Ben Affleck Watch: 'Saturday Night Live' Sketch 'Fanatic' Written & Directed By Paul Thomas Anderson And Starring Ben Affleck The 10 Best Films Of 2003 The 10 Best Films Of 2003 The 10 Best Films Of 2002 The 10 Best Films Of 2002 Check Out These Minimalist, Old School Paperback-Style Posters For The Films Of Wes Anderson Check Out These Minimalist, Old School Paperback-Style Posters For The Films Of Wes Anderson First Look: Leonardo DiCaprio Gets Grimy In Alejandro González Iñárritu's 'The Revenant' First Look: Leonardo DiCaprio Gets Grimy In Alejandro González Iñárritu's 'The Revenant' The 30 Most Anticipated Movies Of The 2015 Sundance Film Festival The 30 Most Anticipated Movies Of The 2015 Sundance Film Festival 2015 Oscar Nominees Get The Honest Poster Treatment 2015 Oscar Nominees Get The Honest Poster Treatment "Carry Bolt Cutters Everywhere": Werner Herzog Has 24 Amazing Pieces Of Advice "Carry Bolt Cutters Everywhere": Werner Herzog Has 24 Amazing Pieces Of Advice The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far Watch: 3 Graphic, Very NSFW Clips From Lars von Trier's 'Nymphomaniac Vol II — Director's Cut' Watch: 3 Graphic, Very NSFW Clips From Lars von Trier's 'Nymphomaniac Vol II — Director's Cut' The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki Christopher Nolan Says His Howard Hughes Film Is Dead, But He'd Still Like To Do A Bond Film At Some Point Christopher Nolan Says His Howard Hughes Film Is Dead, But He'd Still Like To Do A Bond Film At Some Point

Albert Finney Goes From Bourne To Sam Mendes' 'James Bond 23'

Photo of Oliver Lyttelton By Oliver Lyttelton | The Playlist October 28, 2011 at 11:53AM

When it was announced that Oscar-winner Sam Mendes, a man best known for prestige pictures like "American Beauty" and "Revolutionary Road," would be directing the new James Bond film, it was generally seen as something of a curveball. And if anyone was expecting business as usual for the franchise (especially after the poorly-received "Quantum of Solace"), they were mistaken. While previous entries have been made up of acclaimed, but relatively small names like Mads Mikkelsen and Mathieu Amalric, Mendes has stacked his deck with a host of award winners.
3


When it was announced that Oscar-winner Sam Mendes, a man best known for prestige pictures like "American Beauty" and "Revolutionary Road," would be directing the new James Bond film, it was generally seen as something of a curveball. And if anyone was expecting business as usual for the franchise (especially after the poorly-received "Quantum of Solace"), they were mistaken. While previous entries have been made up of acclaimed, but relatively small names like Mads Mikkelsen and Mathieu Amalric, Mendes has stacked his deck with a host of award winners.

Joining Daniel Craig and Judi Dench for the new installment, rumored to be titled "Skyfall," were Javier Bardem and Ralph Fiennes, both Oscar-lauded actors a few steps above the usual Bond villain names, while much-praised stage actors like Ben Whishaw, Naomie Harris, Helen McCrory and Rory Kinnear (who appeared in "Quantum of Solace" as M's right-hand man, but will have a bumped-up role this time out) are also on board, along with relative newcomer Berenice Marlohe, who'll play the Bond girl. And they've been joined by another acting legend, one with recent experience in the spy genre.

Baz Bamigboye, who's been the first stop for casting on the project throughout, reports that the great Albert Finney joined the cast for a recent table read and has landed "a reasonably big role" as a higher-up at the British Foreign Office, and M (Judi Dench)'s superior. Finney is, obviously, a much-lauded star of stage and screen with a career stretching back over 50 years, and is a five-time Oscar-nominee, most recently a decade ago for "Erin Brokovich."

He's been away from the screen for almost five years, battling prostate cancer, but 2012 will see him pull a double-header in the two big spy franchises, as he's also reprising his role as creepy Mengele-esque mastermind Dr. Albert Hirsch in Tony Gilroy's "The Bourne Legacy," having already appeared in the last installment, 2007's "The Bourne Ultimatum." Our guess is that his Bond role is the one that Mendes was pursuing "The Deep Blue Sea" star Simon Russell Beale for, until the actor had to step out of the running due to stage commitments in London.

Considering the wealth of talent involved and a script by "The Aviator" and "Coriolanus" scribe John Logan (who Bamigboye reports is being courted for future films), this is certainly the most eagerly anticipated Bond flick in years, which is fitting, as the film will be released almost exactly 50 years after the first movie, "Dr. No.." Shooting finally begins next week, and there is a press conference scheduled at Pinewood Studios so we're expecting a few more details -- and perhaps the official title -- will arrive at that time. "James Bond 23" hits theaters on November 9, 2012 (with a European release coming two weeks earlier).

This article is related to: Films, Actors, Sam Mendes, Genre Films, James Bond 23


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates