Saturday, November 26, 2011

Skyfall reunites Bond with Q Branch

Well production is well under way for the 23rd James Bond adventure and a further casting addition has been made from director Sam Mendes. In a surprising turn of events, Brit actor Ben Whishaw has been cast as Q. He was rumoured for a role a few months back but his agent has now confirmed his role as Bond’s gadget manufacturer.

He is an actor who I have not come across previously but he has a respectable CV which predominately is based around character and period pieces more than anything else. He is due to play Richard II in a new BBC Shakespeare adaptation which is part of next year's cultural programming to coincide with the Olympics

This is quite a risky move from Mendes and long standing producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli as Whishaw is 12 years younger than Daniel Craig. Not only that, he will be attempting to fill the quite large shoes of the former Q actor Desmond Llewelyn who sadly passed away back in 1999. John Cleese had a brief stint in the role for The World Is Not Enough and Die Another Day, but to me that was a gimmick that wore off very quickly. My initial reaction was filled with scepticism as a die hard Bond nut, as I would have wanted an actor with slightly more experience. However Whishaw does appear to be carving out a respectable career for himself, appearing in films such as I’m Not There and Bright Star.

I do however admire the American Beauty director for the freshness that he will be bringing to Skyfall. I expect the Perfume actor to bring a certain youthness and vibrancy to the role of equipping Bond with the usual array of inventive gadgets that Bond will utilise. I had previous strong feelings of wanting to bring back certain traditional ingredients that made the James Bond film what they were. That included bringing back Q branch which I am delighted about. I believe Sam Mendes will do Bond fans proud and celebrate the 50th Anniversary of 007 in some style by unveiling a strong follow up to the rather disappointing Quantum of Solace that was released back in 2008.

Mendes has now equipped himself with an impressive British cast that includes Naomie Harris and Albert Finney. Skyfall will see Daniel Craig pit himself against Javier Bardem’s yet undisclosed villain. The full plot is still not been confirmed but I expect more juicy details to be filtered through in the weeks to come. During the unveiling of the cast in the press conference back at the beginning of November, the initial storyline was described as focusing on an attack on M and MI6 and Bond’s pursuit against the threat. Ralph Fiennes is the other actor I am hotly waiting on for a confirmation of who he will actually play. Here’s hoping for a secondary baddie to Javier Bardem’s central role.

So expect a lot of ingenuity and class to the role of Q. Also keep an eye out for a bit of bant between Bond and Q as previously witnessed between the two characters. Just don’t look out for the invisible Aston Martin obviously!