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By Dave Worrall
Photos by Mark Mawston (Copyright 2011, all rights reserved)
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The highlight of yesterday's Bondstars Christmas party at Pinewood Studios was an on-stage talk by Alan Church, who worked with Maurice Binder on many of the James Bond film title sequences. Alan showed the 120+ audience a DVD of behind the scenes footage of Binder filming the titles for Licence To KIll, detailing how he filmed a scantily-clad model dancing around and firing a gun. It was fascinating to see Binder directing every move with attention to detail, using a wind machine, filming with slow-motion cameras, and even painting out skin blemish's on the model's body!
Jenny Hanley emcees the Mastermind contest event.
Prior to this, organizer Gareth Owen interviewed past crew members on stage, »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Cinema Retro)
There was no a-ha! moment, no seeing of the light, no epiphany. I’d loved movies since I was a kid, had been a buff since my early teens, but there was no one, shining instance of enlightenment where my relationship with film graduated to something — … Well, the kind of thing my Sound on Sight colleagues have been talking about this month with their “gateway” films. Instead, it was a cumulative experience for me; my road to that point was a long, winding, gradual one. Here and there along that road something would lodge in the ol’ gray matter, tickle at some deep place, until enough of those somethings gathered up over the years finally coalesced into a critical mass.
But I can tell you where that first turn in that road was; that first stop where I picked up that first something. I was six years old, it was »
- Bill Mesce
Sir Roger Moore not only maintained the role over 12 years and seven movies, he says he remains as big a James Bond fan as anyone.
"I think Daniel Craig is a wonderful actor," the British star also well-known as television's original "Saint" tells Zap2it from his home in Crans-Montana, Switzerland. "When I read that he was going to do it right at the beginning, I thought, 'This is going to be interesting.' I had just seen him in [the Steven Spielberg-directed drama] 'Munich' and a couple of films before that, and I thought 'Casino Royale' was absolutely superb.
"He's a beautiful actor and a nice guy," Moore adds, "and his gymnastics are quite extraordinary. I would have been dead after the first movie." Craig returns as Bond next November in "Skyfall," four years after "Quantum of Solace," and the delay between 007 capers hasn't surprised Moore: "It was purely »
It’s official, Bond 23 is called Skyfall and filming is already underway for a release in cinemas next October (November in the U.S.) on the 50th anniversary of the film franchise. So as we all start to get hyped up with the series again (yes, a year to go is Not too early to get excited!), it couldn’t be a better time to chart the greatest moments from the Bond films so far…
The James Bond series has been a staple of the cinema-going population’s calendar for the past 49 years! Bond has become a character so ingrained within popular culture that there’s barely a human being alive in the world who doesn’t know who he is. He gets the most beautiful women, drives the best cars and travels to the most exotic corners of the globe. Men want to be him; women want to »
- Stuart Cummins
Bond baddie Richard Kiel has been reduced to life in a wheelchair because his balance has been destroyed.
Kiel, 72, tells the Globe, "Little by little I started losing my auto balance. We balance with our toes without thinking and a toddler learns that through trial and error. I became like a 320-pound toddler." »
Trevor Hogg profiles the career of Hollywood icon Clint Eastwood in the third of a five-part feature (read parts one and two)...
“You’ve got to keep stretching out and trying other stuff,” observed actor and director Clint Eastwood. “I could have chosen a lot of scripts that were different than Bronco Billy , that were less of a challenge but it was worth trying.” The native of San Francisco, California explains, “It’s about the American Dream, and Billy’s dream that he fought so hard for. It’s all the context of this outdated Wild West show that has absolutely no chance of being a hit. But it’s sweet. It’s pure.” The subject matter resembles the work of two legendary Hollywood filmmakers. “My first thought was that Frank Capra [It’s a Wonderful Life] or Preston Sturges [Sullivan’s Travels] might have done it in their heyday. It has some values that were interesting to »
Ok, so we should probably remind ourselves that we have entered silly season with potential, proposed and fake titles regarding the 23rd James Bond movie and it’ll be like this until Daniel Craig or Eon Productions, MGM or Sony Pictures announce with a press release just what the hell the film will actually be called.
So with that in mind and taking this with as big a grain of salt as you can grab, I got an email less than 30 minutes ago that makes a good argument for the 23rd James Bond movie, which begins filming soon for a release in just over 12 months time, to be officially titled…. Skyfall.
It appears that a brand protection company working for Sony Pictures registered a dozen Urls two days ago (on October 3rd) which suggest they are planning something around the term “Skyfall” and James Bond;
- Matt Holmes
James Bond isn’t always smooth. James Bond isn’t always cool. As a lifelong fan, it pains me to say it — but, sometimes, James Bond = total pants. Over 22 films (oh, all right, Bond geeks: 23 including the non-Eon produced Never Say Never Again) there have been some excruciating hands-over-the-eyes moments that make you go (for want of a better word): “Bleh.”
I don’t mean continuity errors or bloopers. I mean those scenes which make you slap your forehead in disbelief and shout ‘No, no, No!’ at the screen.
You know what I mean: Roger Moore snowboarding to the sounds of The Beach Boys; Roger Moore climbing into a submarine that’s disguised as an iceberg. Roger Moore climbing into a submarine that’s disguised as a crocodile. Roger Moore in space. Roger Moore (do you sense a theme here?) driving a motorised gondola. Grace Jones doing anything. Eric Serra »
- Tony Greenway
Netflix has revolutionized the home viewing market for movies with their instant streaming service. Netflix Nuggets is my way of spreading the word about films of all genres worth holding a spot on your instant viewing queue. (Release dates are subject to change.)
Diamonds Are Forever (1971)
Streaming Available: 09/01/2011
Synopsis: When he discovers that his evil nemesis, Blofeld (Charles Gray), is stockpiling the world’s supply of diamonds to use in a deadly laser satellite, secret agent James Bond (Sean Connery) sets out to stop the madman, with the help of beautiful smuggler Tiffany Case (Jill St. John). Connery’s final turn as Bond (until 1983′s unofficial outing, Never Say Never Again) boasts the gadgets, gunplay and girls that symbolize the heyday of the 007 series.
Average Netflix Rating: 3.8
For Your Eyes Only (1981)
Streaming Available: 09/01/2011
Synopsis: In the 12th film in the series based on Ian Fleming’s short stories, British »
- Travis Keune
Our round-up of John Barry’s non-Bond movie scores continues with a look at some romantic compositions from the disco decade…
As we embark on the fourth part of our appreciation of John Barry’s career beyond Bond, we move into a decade renowned for its glitter balls, bell-bottoms and jiggle television. However, this phase of Barry’s career is representative of a burgeoning interest in more emotionally charged, fractured and complex ideas, viewed through the filter of a maturing, mellowing artist.
Even the most vibrant, exotic scores could not disguise the introspection and sensitivity of the man himself. He continued to chase universal themes – and he was still capable of conjuring up worlds of intrigue and drama – but the projects he gravitated towards more in the wake of Midnight Cowboy were those that allowed him to explore more intimate musical textures.
Barry still accepted a range of eclectic assignments, »
“My name is Bond - James Bond". That classic introduction to the cinema’s greatest secret agent is as famous as “I am Dracula, I bid you welcome.” When the box office success of Dr No (1962) turned the unknown Sean Connery into a movie legend, Hammer was never far away from the franchise. With their own films running parallel to the Bond series, Hammer and Eon Productions often made use of the same talent.
Dr No also marked the debuts of Bernard Lee (the first of 11 films as M) and Lois Maxwell (the first of 14 as Miss Moneypenny). Lee had a brief turn as Tarmut in Frankenstein and the Monster from Hell (1973) and despite never starring in a Hammer horror, Maxwell turned up in their early fifties thrillers Lady in the Fog (1953) and Mantrap (1954).
As doomed double-agent Professor Dent, Anthony Dawson is best known as the vile Marquis in Curse »
A tribute concert has been announced for composer John Barry, who passed away on January 31. The event will be held in Barry's honour at the Royal Albert Hall on June 20, and is due to feature several guests connected to the composer paying tribute. Barry scored 11 James Bond films including From Russia With Love and Goldfinger, as well as many other classic movies including Midnight Cowboy and Walkabout. Performers on the night will include Dame Shirley Bassey, who sung the Bond themes Goldfinger, Diamonds Are Forever and Moonraker. (more) »
- By Tom Eames
Before I go any further, I should put the title of this piece into context by saying that I am Not a CGI luddite myself. I have been doing 3D modelling and illustration for nearly 15 years in C4D, Max, the continually-amazing ZBrush and many other apps, and can honestly count the emergence of the T-Rex in Jurassic Park as a life-changing moment. So what follows (in case you can't be bothered to read it but find the title irksome) is not a luddite rant against voxels, just a few thoughts about the way we perceive visual effects, and why CGI continues to bother so many people in comparison to previous methods of screen magic...
It's hard for the senior geek to comprehend the expectations and conception that younger viewers - Hollywood's target audience - have about visual effects in movies. We who were old enough to be familiar with »
Chicago – How many of us can honestly say that we have the level of devotion to anything that we would put our lives at risk to protect it? How many of us can say that when faced with almost certain violence, we would stand up and refuse to run in the other direction for any imaginable reason? The moral and spiritual dilemma at the foundation of Xavier Beauvois’s award-winning “Of Gods and Men” is a fascinating one that drives this complex drama in a way that sears it into memory.
“I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High. But ye shall die like men, and fall like one of the princes.” — Book of Psalms, Psalm 82: 6-7.
The first several shots of the true story of “Of Gods and Men” are purposefully framed from behind as the French monks of »
- email@example.com (Adam Fendelman)
On Monday 4th April the British Academy of Film and Television Arts will pay tribute to BAFTA and Academy Award-winning production designer Sir Ken Adam with a belated 90th birthday celebration at a ceremony at London's Royal Institute of British Architects. In a career spanning over five decades, Sir Ken has received five Oscar and nine BAFTA nominations and was responsible for defining the look of the early James Bond films (including Dr. No, Goldfinger, Thunderball, You Only Live Twice, Diamonds are Forever, The Spy Who Loved Me and Moonraker), while he also created one of cinema's most iconic images, designing the War Room from Stanley Kubrick's Dr. Strangelove.
In celebration of his career - which also includes credits on the likes of Barry Lyndon, The Ipcress Files, The Madness of King George and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang - BAFTA will explore Sir Ken's extraordinary body of work, with »
In last week's poll we asked you to tell us who your favourite James Bond villain is, and despite the fact that Alec Trevelyan got out to an early lead, it was Jaws who ended up storming back to win the poll by a fairly large margin. It probably helps that ol' Metal Mouth appeared in not one but two Bond flicks, although I am guessing it is Richard Kiel's physical presence that actually made him so damn memorable. Goldfinger came in at number two, while Spectre head honcho Ernst Stavro Blofeld was a close third. Trevelyan and Le Chiffre rounded out the top 5, while the sole female on the list, poor Rosa Klebb, wound up in dead last. Are you satisfied with these results? 1. Jaws (The Spy Who Loved Me, Moonraker) -- 22.5% 2. Auric Goldfinger (Goldfinger) -- 14% 3. Ernst Stavro Blofeld (Multiple Films) -- 13% 4. Alec Trevelyan (Goldeneye) -- 12.6% 5. Le Chiffre »
Simon Moore selects his Five Essential James Bond Films...
Picture this. It’s Saturday night. The TV schedule has failed you, yet again, on a Bank Holiday weekend, no less. Then a title jumps out at you from the onscreen menu. Ah... there’s a Bond film on...
It doesn’t matter what title, it doesn’t matter when it was made, a Bond title just clicks with everyone. It’s the ultimate shorthand for runaway thrills, face-melting puns and a consistently entertaining hour and a half. By now, we ought to know them by heart. And yet...they never get old. We forgive Moonraker’s dodgy sci-fi ambitions; we can time Roger Moore’s eyebrow twitches to the second; and every man on earth, without exception, automatically affects that pose when they put on a tuxedo.
007 is a tradition, a stalwart, and an icon. He’s survived nearly 50 years, »
This is the sound of cool:
Any man who has put on a tux, or ordered a shaken martini, or tried to learn how the hell to play baccarat has hummed it. It's almost impossible to hear that iconic "James Bond Theme" and not pretend you're holding a gun to your cheek, the way Connery and Moore did. That music is credited to composer Monty Norman, but the guy who arranged it and conducted the orchestra that first recorded it (and argued for decades that he, in fact, was the guy who created it) was John Barry, who died Sunday at the age of 77.
The Bond theme is truly is one of the most perfect pieces of film music ever written. It encompasses all the moods of James Bond from quiet and sultry, the perfect accompaniment to a life-or-death card game, to loud and bombastic, just what you need for »
- Matt Singer
Academy Award winning composer John Barry has passed away after suffering a fatal heart attack, aged 77. Born in York in 1933, Barry began performing as a musician during his National Service and formed The John Barry Seven before going on to work for the BBC on the likes of Juke Box Jury and Drumbeat. Barry made the step into motion pictures when he composed the soundtrack to the British youth drama Beat Girl (1960) starring Adam Faith and Christopher Lee, which became the first soundtrack album to be released on LP in the UK, and after working for Emi between 1959-1962 Barry was hired by the producers of Dr. No (1962) to rework a theme tune by Monty Norman, which led to the creation of the signature 'James Bond Theme'.
One of the true musical greats, composer John Barry, passed away over the weekend in New York City. He was 77.
At the start of the 1960's, Barry was brought on to re-arrange Monty Norman's theme for “Dr. No”, the first James Bond film. The resulting tune remains one of the most famous pieces of film music to have ever been produced, and Barry's signature and easily identifiable style became synonymous with the series.
Barry ultimately scored eleven of the twenty-two Bond films including "From Russia with Love," "Goldfinger," "Thunderball," "You Only Live Twice," "Diamonds are Forever," "The Man with the Golden Gun," "Moonraker," Octopussy," "A View to A Kill," "The Living Daylights" and arguably his most revered score - "On Her Majesty's Secret Service" (which itself heavily inspired Michael Giacchino's "The Incredibles" score).
He also collaborated on many of the series' most famous theme songs including Tom Jones' "Thunderball, »
- Garth Franklin
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