First one-word Bond movie title in seventeen years, the last was GoldenEye (1995). It is also tied with Spectre (2015) as the shortest one-word James Bond movie title. It is one of two titles with two syllables, most of them in the past having three (Goldfinger (1964), Moonraker (1979), GoldenEye (1995), and Thunderball (1965), and Octopussy (1983) had four. Dr. No (1962) remains the shortest Bond movie title with the least number of letters, having five, whereas "Skyfall" has seven.
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Daniel Craig performed the stunt of leaping and sliding down the escalator rail himself.
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After receiving a personal invitation from Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II , Daniel Craig appeared as James Bond in promotion of this movie at the Opening Ceremony of the 2012 Olympic Games in London in the games' introductory video originally titled, "The Arrival", but later known as "Happy and Glorious". The Daniel Craig and Queen Elizabeth II pretend entertainment segment featured Craig as James Bond who meets with the Queen to escort her safely to the stadium. They are seen going to a helicopter, which flies along the Thames River to the cauldron, whereby stunt doubles then "skyfall" jumped out of the helicopters down to the awaiting ceremony to familiar James Bond music. The segment has been said to be the Queen's first acting role.
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Daniel Craig performed many of his own stunts, including the signature rooftop fight on the top of a moving train travelling at fifty kilometers per hour (thirty-one miles per hour) during the opening sequence. Producer Barbara Broccoli has said: "Daniel contributes a great deal to designing the action and the fights in particular, and he's the one who really pulls it off, because he wants to do as much of it as he possibly can. We were in Turkey for the train sequence, and I had my heart in my mouth the whole time. He and Ola (Rapace) were fighting on the roof of a moving train, and the moves that they were doing were just heart stopping. Daniel's the reason why the action works as well as it does, because he sells it, he's up there, and I think audiences know that."
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There is an implication in this movie that Bond's ancestors were Recusant Catholics. When Kincade (Albert Finney) shows M (Dame Judi Dench) the secret escape passage in the chapel at the Bond ancestral estate, he explains that it was originally a hiding place for Priests, which strongly refers to the long period in British history, during which Catholicism was illegal, and the families who continued to practice Catholicism, sheltered Priests, and refused the authority of the official church (Church of Scotland, a.k.a. Presbyterian in this case) were referred to as "Recusants". One such prominent, real-life Recusant family from Dorset, were named "Bond". Their Latin family motto was "Non sufficit orbis", which translates to "Not even the world is enough", or, more colloquially, "The World Is Not Enough (1999)", as used in Fleming's novel On Her Majesty's Secret Service, and the title of a later Bond movie. One member of this family, John Bond, was reportedly a spy for Sir Francis Drake during Elizabethan times (despite his family's Catholicism).
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The passport used by Daniel Craig was not created by the prop department, but an authentic document as issued by the British Home Office, according to producer Michael G. Wilson. Everything from the paper, print, photograph, and jacket are entirely genuine on James Bond's "official passport". However, as a security measure, the passport is encoded with information that would instantly flag its improper use in any official transaction. The actual details shown on Bond's passport in this movie are as follows: Name = John Adam Bryce; Date of Birth = 16th December 1968; Sex = Male; Place of Birth = London; Date of Issue = 22nd June 2012; and Expiry Date = 22nd August 2029.
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Hashima Island, the site of Tiago Rodriguez, a.k.a. Raoul Silva's lair, is a tiny deserted industrialized island situated off the southwest coast of Japan, fifteen kilometers (nine and a half miles) from Nagasaki, and running just four hundred eighty meters (three tenths of a mile) long and one hundred sixty meters (one tenth of a mile) wide. The small isle is one of five hundred five uninhabited islands in the Nagasaki Prefecture. The isle is also known as "Ghost Island", as well as "Gunkanjima", which translates as "Battleship Island". The island was last significantly inhabited in 1974, and was once a thriving coal mining community. The island is notable for its character, due to its sea wall, and its untouched abandoned and derelict concrete buildings.
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The first time a character is audibly heard saying the "f" word in a James Bond movie. In The Living Daylights (1987), Bond (Timothy Dalton) clearly said "For fu-k's sake!", but it couldn't be heard due to plane engine noise. This movie is the first Bond movie to use an audible variation of the "f" word, said by M (Dame Judi Dench) at Skyfall Lodge.
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There were eighty-five versions of James Bond's Tom Ford suit tailor-made for the opening chase sequence. Thirty were made for Daniel Craig, and thirty for his double and stunt double. Each version of the suit was made specifically for a particular scene of the opening sequence. For example, when Craig was riding the motorcycle, a suit with longer sleeves was worn so that it wouldn't raise up over his forearms. Costume designer Jany Temime said: "Each suit had three fittings, like a real traditional Saville Row suit. It was very high class tailoring. The first suit was mohair, very lightweight, woolen silk. The tuxedo is woolen silk. They were all (made of) beautiful fabric. He (would be) jumping and fighting, and then he would stand up, and the suit would be perfect." Also, Craig's tie had to be weighted for the motorcycle section of the chase. The weight kept the tie from flying around when he rode at high speeds.
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Dame Judi Dench has more screentime in this movie alone than Desmond Llewelyn had in his seventeen movies as Q, making her portrayal of M the most recurrent character in the franchise, after Bond.
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Daniel Craig said that he was worried by the delays in the production, and was eager to get back into the role because, at the age of forty-three, he feels he is already getting too old to cope with the extreme physical demands of playing James Bond. Craig starts preparation for a Bond movie about six months prior to filming, and works out for about two hours each day of principal photography after shooting has wrapped.
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A few days after this movie debuted in Britain, the real MI6, the Secret Intelligence Service (S.I.S.), took out a full page advertisement in "The Times" and "The Sunday Times" running with the headline "If the qualities that make a good spy were obvious, they wouldn't make a very good spy." The aim of the ad was to debunk the legend and mythology associated with movie fiction spies, like James Bond in this movie, saying that real-life spy work is not "high-speed chases and shoot-outs", an average spy is not a "globe-trotting secret agent" and that psychological profiles of real-life agents show that they are actually "far more ordinary". The ad also dismisses the white male spy stereotype, saying that "the truth is, we don't care what sex you are, or where you're from, as long as you're a British national." The humorous advertising campaign is considered one of MI6's most open recruitment drives. But in true espionage fashion, the ad still warns of utmost secrecy and strict confidentiality, advising potential candidates that they cannot disclose that they are making an application to anyone.
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Dame Judi Dench played the role of M in this movie at the age of seventy-seven. The performance is also Dench's seventh time playing M. This is Dench's largest on-screen role playing M, the most significant James Bond movie ever to explore a relationship between M and James Bond. Producer Barbara Broccoli said that this movie explores this relationship perhaps more than in any of the twenty-two previous movies. She said, "We wanted to really mine the relationship between Bond and M, because it is the most significant relationship he has in his life. M is the only person who represents authority to him. You have two extraordinary actors, and we just thought, let's go all the way. It's worked extremely well. It's a very emotional story."
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The role of Kincade (Albert Finney) was originally written with Sir Sean Connery in mind. Producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson originally wanted Connery to come out of retirement and make a surprise cameo. Director Sam Mendes told "The Huffington Post", "There was a definite discussion about (Connery playing Kincade), way, way early on. But I think that's problematic. Because, to me, it becomes too... it would take you out of the movie. Connery is Bond, and he's not going to come back as another character. It's like, he's been there. So, it was a very brief flirtation with that thought, but it was never going to happen, because I thought it would distract."
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The opening sequence shot in Adana and Istanbul, Turkey took around two months to film, three months of rehearsals, four months of preparation, 200 crew members from England, and another 200 local crew, in order to produce around twelve to fourteen minutes of screentime.
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Daniel Craig told Rolling Stone Magazine that he wanted this to be his third and final Bond movie, saying, "I've been trying to get out of this from the very moment I got into it, but they won't let me go." Craig has signed on for the next two James Bond movies, Spectre (2015) and No Time to Die (2020).
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Daniel Craig bonded with Javier Bardem on the set over their shared love of rugby. In his youth, Craig played for Hoylake Rugby Football Club in Wirral, Merseyside. Bardem played for Club de Rugby Liceo Francés in Madrid, and even made the Spanish national team at underage level.
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On an October 2012 episode of The Graham Norton Show (2007), Dame Judi Dench revealed how her mobile cell phone has a ringtone with the James Bond theme, and how when it rang during filming on the set, it would often produce laughter, and after a while, her annoying 007 cell phone ringtone became an on-set running joke.
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For the motorcycle chase in Turkey, Coca-Cola was sprayed on the tarmac of the streets in Istanbul to keep the bikes from sliding. While Coca-Cola is not an official product placement in the movie, there was a Coke Zero marketing campaign that tied in with the movie. Coke Zero would have been less effective, as the sugar in Coca-Cola makes it sticky.
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Numerous cast members, playing smaller parts in the movie, never received a script with which to work, due to the production's strict secrecy protocols, so stringent and tight that they reflect real-life intelligence espionage. Tonia Sotiropoulou did not know what she would be doing in this movie until the time her scenes were shot. She commented, "I was one of the people who never had a script. I just got told what I'd be doing on the set by the director. They have to be so careful. You have quite strict contracts that say you can't say anything about the plot, and everyone respects that."
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This movie was influenced by Batman Begins (2005) and The Dark Knight (2008) by director Christopher Nolan, according to director Sam Mendes. Several early reviews of this movie likened the mood of the movie to that of The Dark Knight Rises (2012). Interestingly, a recurring line of dialogue in The Dark Knight Rises (2012) was "permission to die", this is also the title of a 1989 James Bond comic book. A shot of Bond standing on top of a building, looking out over London with a flag of England, evoked Batman perched on rooftops looking out over Gotham City. Mendes said: "In terms of what (Nolan) achieved, specifically The Dark Knight (2008), the second movie, what it achieved, which is something exceptional. It was a game changer for everybody. What Nolan proved was that you can make a huge movie that is thrilling and entertaining, and has a lot to say about the world we live in, even if, in the case with The Dark Knight (2008), it's not even set in our world. That did help give me the confidence to take this movie in directions that, without The Dark Knight (2008), might not have been possible." Nolan has often stated that the classic James Bond movies were an influence on his The Dark Knight trilogy. As such, one can say that Bond has inspired Batman and that Batman has inspired Bond.
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The most successful James Bond movie at the international box office in the official film franchise's history.
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Final of twenty-three James Bond movies for trumpet player Derek Watkins, who had worked in the music department as a trumpeter on every James Bond movie since he was 17 years old, when he worked on Dr. No (1962). Watkins died in 2013, four months after the release of this movie.
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M's (Dame Judi Dench's) house in this movie is the former home of legendary James Bond composer John Barry. The filmmakers thought it would be a loving tribute to the late composer, who scored many of the James Bond movies, and defined the signature theme music in the franchise, his work being a core inspiration for the modern Bond music composed by David Arnold. John Barry died in 2011. Thomas Newman's score for this movie has been said to pay tribute to Barry.
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The quotation that M recites is from Alfred Lord Tennyson's poem "Ulysses", "To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield". First published in 1842, its recitation in this movie's 2012 release occurred on the poem's 170th anniversary.
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In fifty years of James Bond movies, this is only the second one in which Bond suffers a gunshot wound. (He was also shot in Thunderball (1965) during the Junkanoo chase.)
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The porcelain bulldog on M's desk (which she later gives to Bond) is draped in the Union Jack. These bulldog figurines were created by Royal Doulton during World War II to represent patriotism. In Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011), Control (Sir John Hurt), the head of MI6, has two Royal Doulton bulldogs sitting on his desk.
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Reportedly, sales of cutthroat razors increased by around four hundred percent in the week following this movie's launch. On-line retailers of cutthroat razors reported sales increases of fifty to four hundred percent due to the exposure generated by this movie. The spike in sales has been attributed to the love scene in this movie, where Miss Eve Moneypenny (Naomie Harris) gives James Bond (Daniel Craig) an erotic close-shave with an old style straight razor, commenting with a classic line, "Sometimes the old ways are the best."
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Kevin Spacey was considered for a role, but declined due to scheduling conflicts. It is believed that director Sam Mendes originally offered Spacey the role of the villain, Tiago Rodriguez, a.k.a. Raoul Silva. Spacey worked with Mendes on American Beauty (1999), in which Kevin Spacey's character complained to his wife about missing a James Bond marathon on television.
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At the 2013 Academy Awards ceremony, this movie became the first James Bond movie to achieve several records in the franchise's history: The highest number of Academy Award nominations ever received by a Bond movie (five: Best Song, Score, Sound Mixing, Sound Effects Editing, and Cinematography). The first Bond movie in three decades to receive Oscar nominations. The last time was in 1982, when For Your Eyes Only (1981) was nominated for Best Song. 1982 also saw producer Albert R. Broccoli receive the Honorary Thalberg Award. First Bond movie to win two Oscars (Goldfinger (1964) and Thunderball (1965) won just the one each). The third Bond movie to win an Academy Award, and the first in forty-seven years, the last being Thunderball (1965). This movie's tied Oscar for Sound Editing was not actually the first in that category, as Goldfinger (1964) had won for Best Effects, Sound Effects; and Diamonds Are Forever (1971) had been nominated for Best Sound. Although many Bond songs have been nominated for the Best Song Oscar (Live and Let Die (1973), For Your Eyes Only (1981), The Spy Who Loved Me (1977), and the unofficial Casino Royale (1967)), Adele's "Skyfall" became the first James Bond theme to win the Academy Award for Best Original Song.
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This movie deals with James Bond's Scottish ancestry. Bond's family history was created by Ian Fleming in the Bond novel "On Her Majesty's Secret Service". Fleming was inspired to add the backstory of Bond's genealogy into the book after seeing the character played by Sir Sean Connery (a Scotsman) in Dr. No (1962). This is the second time in the official James Bond film franchise that Bond discussed the death of his parents. The first time was in GoldenEye (1995). The Clan of Bond names, created by the production for the plaques and headstones at the chapel and graveyard, include: Andrew Bond, Robert Bond, Monique Delacroix Bond, Celia Bond, Kathleen Bond, Elsa/Elsie Louise Bond, Ramsay William Bond, and Margaret Jean Davidson Bond.
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The production was criticized during principal photography in Turkey for allegedly damaging the rooftops of buildings in Istanbul, where a rooftop motorcycle chase was being filmed. One such incident that made local headlines was when a stunt rider rode off a roof and smashed the window of the renowned Bobeyi jewelery store. Producer Michael G. Wilson held a press conference and the claims were quashed, as the roofing had been removed for the stunt riding, and replaced with replicas until filming wrapped, whereupon the original tiling was returned. This is not the first Bond movie to feature a rooftop motorcycle chase, it's the second, as one appeared in Tomorrow Never Dies (1997).
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The shooting location of Shanghai makes this the first Bond movie to have filmed in China. Originally, Licence to Kill (1989) was to be filmed in China, but when the Chinese government made several restrictive demands, such as veto rights over the script, the viability of the location fell through. This was once rumored to feature a motorcycle chase along the Great Wall of China, a chase sequence originally intended for Licence to Kill (1989), but instead there is a rooftop motorcycle chase, filmed in Istanbul, Turkey. Another sequence, a fight sequence in the then recently discovered museum of ancient terracotta statues at Xian, was also scheduled for Licence to Kill (1989), but this sequence wasn't used for this film either. Screenwriter John Logan wanted to use Shanghai as a filming location because, "What we were looking for was opposition to London. We wanted exotic locations that seem so unlike the world that he grew up in, the world that he functions in, in a way trying to find places for Bond to be uncomfortable."
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For the first time in the famous gun barrel sequence, Bond is seen wearing a grey suit rather than a black one.
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The second time James Bond cries openly. The first time was in On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969).
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At two hours and twenty-three minutes, this is the second-longest Bond movie of all time, the longest being Casino Royale (2006), at two hours and twenty-four minutes. The third-longest running time for a Bond movie is two hours and twenty-two minutes for On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969).
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This movie introduces one new actress and two new actors to play three recurring roles in the franchise. They are Naomie Harris as Miss Eve Moneypenny, Ben Whishaw as Q, and Ralph Fiennes as M. In each case, each of the three is the fourth person to play his or her respective character in the official James Bond franchise.
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Adele was pregnant when she recorded the theme song. In an interview with the BBC, she said her pregnancy hormones caused her voice to go deeper, hense why her singing tone in this song is so low. She also said she is not able to re-create this low tone now.
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During principal photography, three Turkish youths bypassed tight security in Adana, Turkey, to infiltrate a closed movie set, where they filmed footage of a train scene being shot with their mobile phones. Fitting of the intrigue from the earlier Turkey-set Bond movie, From Russia with Love (1963), the three snuck through alleyways and jumped a wire fence into a train station where this movie was being filmed. The trio slipped under train cars and rendezvoused at the repair depot, where they went into spy disguise and put on off-duty worker's helmets and overalls. They were later caught by security, interrogated, and removed from the set.
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This movie is not a follow-up from the two previous movies. Producer Barbara Broccoli said that the franchise "will go on to other different stories from now on." However, the reappearance of the QUANTUM organization in later movies is still a possibility. Broccoli said: "I think in some way, he will go after the (QUANTUM) organization. So in that sense, it may become a trilogy, but we haven't really structured it that way."
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During the martini scene at the bar, the famous James Bond drink catchphrase "shaken, not stirred", wasn't spoken, but the martini was explicitly concocted on-screen, and the bartender is shown shaking the martini before pouring it. Also, the bottle of alcohol that Tiago Rodriguez, a.k.a. Raoul Silva (Javier Bardem), offers Bond (Daniel Craig) on his island says "1962" on its label, referencing the franchise's 50th Anniversary. The beer is Heineken, who contributed a rather large amount of money for the product placements. Bill Tanner (Rory Kinnear) was also seen drinking the beverage.
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Second time in the official James Bond film franchise that Bond broke into M's (Dame Judi Dench's) house, as he did in Casino Royale (2006). That time, M said, "Don't ever break into my house again", though she fails to mention that in this movie.
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Adele's "Skyfall" is the first Billboard Top 10 hit to win the Academy Award for Best Original Song since Eminem's "Lose Yourself" from 8 Mile (2002).
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The top-secret Intelligence career of original James Bond producer Harry Saltzman was first revealed by fellow Canadian David Giammarco in his acclaimed 2002 book "For Your Eyes Only: Behind the Scenes of the James Bond Films", published for the 40th anniversary of the James Bond movies. For this 50th anniversary 007 movie, longtime Bond franchise collaborator David Giammarco, along with contributions from Hilary Saltzman and Steven Saltzman, disclosed the full extent of their father's Intelligence work, including previously-classified documents, photos, and analysis in an exclusive feature for Vanity Fair Magazine titled "50 Years of 007: The Secret Spy Life of James Bond Producer Harry Saltzman". As part of the James Bond worldwide publicity for the golden milestone of cinema's longest-running franchise begun in 1962 by Albert R. Broccoli and Saltzman, this remarkable package of revelations, kept under extremely tight wraps by Giammarco and Vanity Fair for nearly a year, immediately sparked thrilling media headlines around the globe in the countdown to the highly-anticipated theatrical release of this movie.
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Javier Bardem described his character as "An angel of death, a very cleanshaven person who happens to be rotten on the inside. He has a very personal objective, he's not trying to destroy the world, and he is on a straight line to that objective. He is a man seeking revenge. It's about being focused on the one person he wants to eliminate." Bardem has also explained about finding the character inside the villain: "It's always about who's the person behind the character. It would be very difficult for me to play a role that I just saw as some kind of symbol. In this case, there is a man suffering, a man full of pain and frustration, who simply wants to fix the situation. Within that journey, there was room to be funny or aggressive, but I could perfectly understand who he was, and that helped me to portray him."
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M's name is "Olivia Mansfield". A 2013 prop exhibition revealed her full name to be visible in an inscription on the box given to James Bond from Miss Eve Moneypenny containing M's porcelain bulldog figurine. In 1995, the original script for GoldenEye (1995) had revealed M's name as "Barbara Mawdsley", but early drafts of scripts aren't considered canon, only what ends up on-screen, and this was before the reboot with Casino Royale (2006), so Dame Judi Dench's interpretation of M could be two different characters (however unlikely). Curiously, "Olivia" is Dench's middle name, and the first head of the British Secret Service was (George) Mansfield Smith-Cummings (known by the first letter of his last name "C"). According to fellow spy novelist John le Carré, Ian Fleming (ever tongue-in-cheek), designated the head of S.I.S. as "M", using Cummings' first name. Keeping the Mansfield as a surname is a twist, but not intended in any of Fleming's original works. Fleming's "The Man With The Golden Gun" gave M's name as "Myles Messervy".
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Eminönü Square, a busy business district in Istanbul, Turkey, was used for filming the opening sequence, and had to be closed for three weeks in order to do this. The place is one of Istanbul's oldest and most magnificent squares, and is surrounded by the ancient Spice Bazaar and the fabulous Yeni Mosque. In a curious requirement for the bazaars, the shops could open, but could not trade, due to the area being off-limits to the public, traffic, and pedestrians. Shopkeepers were reimbursed 750 Turkish Liras per day to cover their losses. The Turkish bazaar sequence in this movie featured over 250 dressed market stalls, created by the Art and Prop departments, and was populated by around 500 extras.
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If you watch the scene in the Komodo dragon pit closely, you will notice Daniel Craig has strange-looking, pudgy hands. This is because during filming, Craig had gone to the shops and purchased a pair of gloves that he thought were fitting for 007. Director Sam Mendes let him wear them in the scene, but later during editing, they realized the gloves didn't work with the logic of the scene: James Bond's gun is picked up by a henchman, who is unable to fire it because the gun has been coded to Bond's palm print, only allowing Bond to fire it. Therefore, Bond wearing gloves makes no sense, as he wouldn't be able to fire his gun. After some frantic calculations on how much re-shooting the scene would cost, it was deemed too expensive, and Craig's hands were CGI'd in.
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Ben Whishaw is the fourth actor to play Q in the official James Bond franchise. This marks the first time that Q is younger than James Bond. The producers have said that "When it came to trying to reintroduce the character of Q, it made sense that he would now be a young technical genius, and the character was written with that in mind." Whishaw's Q has been likened to that of computer genius-types like Jack Dorsey and Mark Zuckerberg. Coincidentally, Whishaw has said that he doesn't even own a computer. Peter Burton first played Q under the character's real name of Major Boothroyd, and nicknamed "the Armorer" in Dr. No (1962), then Desmond Llewelyn played Q in seventeen Bond films between 1963 and 1999, followed by John Cleese (as Q's assistant "R") in The World Is Not Enough (1999), then as Q in Die Another Day (2002), the latter being the last time the character appeared in the official franchise before this movie. Whishaw is the sixth actor to play Q when one counts the unofficial Bond films Casino Royale (1967) and Never Say Never Again (1983), where Q was played by Geoffrey Bayldon and Alec McCowen, respectively. Q is an abbreviation for the word "Quartermaster".
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Tiago Rodriguez, a.k.a. Raoul Silva's (Javier Bardem's), helicopter was an AgustaWestland AW101. Even though this was one of the newest, and most advanced, helicopters when this movie was made, sound effects editor William R. Dean did the common practice of dubbing in the sound of a two-bladed Bell Huey Vietnam-era helicopter, developed in the late 1950s.
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Naomie Harris stated on The Graham Norton Show (2007) that, because she would be using a real razor blade (unusual for a movie of such high value status), she spent six weeks with a professional barber training for the razor shaving scene, trying it on members of the crew along the way.
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This marks the third consecutive James Bond movie which ends with him alone, where most other films in the franchise, he is seen with one of the leading Bond Girls.
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The promotional tie-in with Heineken lager beer for this movie has been valued at being £28 million ($45 million American). The product placement caused a controversy in the media prior to release, criticism being made for lacking integrity, blatant commercialization with Daniel Craig appearing in a Heineken ad, and being disrespectful to James Bond's traditional drink, the shaken, not stirred martini. Producer Michael G. Wilson and Daniel Craig defended the financing by indicating that the Bond movies cost a lot of money to make, and this movie could not be completed without this support; that many of the product placements are based around supply of the products, with technical support, and the fact that James Bond is still seen drinking a vodka martini.
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When Bond (Daniel Craig) and Q (Ben Whishaw) meet in the National Gallery in London, Q jokes about giving Bond an exploding pen when Bond moans about the tools received to fulfill the mission. Two previous movies had Q giving Bond such a pen: Never Say Never Again (1983) and GoldenEye (1995).
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The first James Bond movie to be shot entirely on digital. Previously, only part of one scene in Quantum of Solace (2008) was shot digitally. It is also the first to use the Arri Alexa Studio camera, which cinematographer Roger Deakins selected because, unlike the other Alexa models, it has an optical viewfinder. It is also Deakins' second digitally-shot movie, after In Time (2011), on which he also used the Alexa.
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Director Sam Mendes used to be in a relationship with Rachel Weisz, who was once rumored to going to be cast in this movie. Weisz is now married to Daniel Craig. Weisz has also appeared in espionage movies, such as The Bourne Legacy (2012) and The Constant Gardener (2005), for which she won an Academy Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role, and which coincidentally also starred Ralph Fiennes.
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In early drafts of the script, when M (Dame Judi Dench) enters her house to find James Bond (Daniel Craig) waiting for her, the line "007 reporting for duty" was followed by "You're supposed to be dead." Bond's response was "I came back", and M said "You only live twice, Mr. Bond". This would have been a reference to You Only Live Twice (1967), starring Sir Sean Connery.
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Glencoe, Scotland is a filming location that portrays its own setting: Glencoe. In the James Bond novel "On Her Majesty's Secret Service", Ian Fleming gave Bond a sense of family background, writing that Bond's father Andrew was from Glencoe. The Glencoe region has one of the most iconic landscapes in Scotland, the mountains contain some of the oldest sedimentary and volcanic strata in the world. In this movie, these mountains served as a beautiful backdrop for Bond and M's drive through Glencoe's scenic roads, in the iconic silver-birch Aston Martin DB5.
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The exotic Calis Beach, a remote beach in Fethiye, Turkey, was a great challenge for the locations department to secure for filming a sequence featuring James Bond. EON Productions had to negotiate with the 613 part-owners of the beach to allow filming to take place there.
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Sixth appearance in the official James Bond franchise of the classic silver birch Aston Martin DB5 car. This movie marks the return of the vehicle, which first appeared in Goldfinger (1964), and last appeared, very briefly, in Quantum of Solace (2008). The DB5 has also appeared in Thunderball (1965), GoldenEye (1995), and Tomorrow Never Dies (1997). The car also features in the James Bond video games James Bond in Agent Under Fire (2001), 007 Racing (2000), James Bond 007: Bloodstone (2010), and From Russia with Love (2005), but not in the tie-in video game 007 Legends (2012), which has instead the Aston Martin DBS. The license plate number of the DB5 in this movie is BMT 216A, the same as it was in Goldfinger (1964) and Thunderball (1965), the complex, out of which the car drives, resembles that from Goldfinger (1964). The famous DB series of Aston Martin cars was named after Sir David Brown. Brown was an entrepreneur, adventurer, and chairman of Aston Martin from the late 1940s to the 1970s.
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According to the U.K. Sun newspaper, Bond Girl Bérénice Marlohe said that Daniel Craig was coy and hesitant before filming their love scene in the shower. Marlohe said: "He was very shy, and when he saw me entering the shower, he was like, 'Oh, my God'. He tried to keep his underpants on for the shower scene, but I said, 'No, come on, don't be shy. I will do anything to make you feel comfortable.'"
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The provocative scene where James Bond meets Tiago Rodriguez, a.k.a. Raoul Silva in what appears to be some kind of homosexual seduction often provoked giggles between Daniel Craig and Javier Bardem to alleviate the tension between the two.
The Grand Bazaar in Istanbul, Turkey was featured prominently during the opening chase sequence. The Grand Bazaar is one of the largest and oldest covered markets in the world, with sixty-one covered streets, and over three thousand shops attracting up to four hundred thousand visitors daily. Due to the hazardous nature of the sequence, access to the location for this movie unit could only to be granted on Sunday, when the bazaar is closed. Through a combination of efforts from the locations department, production design, art department, and prop department, the bazaar was dressed overnight on preceding Saturday nights to look like the hive of activity that the one would expect from the location. 500 Turkish extras were brought into the Grand Bazaar to provide the location with its usual crowded and buzzing atmosphere. The rooftops of the Bazaar served as a spectacular platform to view Istanbul's ancient and dynamic skyline. The production went to great lengths to protect and preserve the Grand Bazaar's historic architecture, which included floating reinforced steel roof panels over the existing tiles to protect the original structure. The age of the Grand Bazaar shop, where a motorcycle crashes through its window, was around 330 years old.
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The glass set, depicting the inside of the Shanghai office skyscraper, was nicknamed "The Jellyfish". It was built at Pinewood Studios, and was likened to being like "a hall of mirrors". Cinematographer Roger Deakins said: "Because it was all glass, the crew walking through it kept bashing into things". For filming, Deakins lit the set with two gigantic LED panels, which were used to represent electronic billboards exterior to the skyscraper's office windows. The production had originally location scouted for a Chinese skyscraper, but this proved to be unsuccessful, the substitute set providing improvements by being multi-dimensionally made of glass. The sequence in this movie, that "The Jellyfish" is seen, is when Bond is on the track of an assassin on the way to a Shanghai office complex. In The Man with the Golden Gun (1974), a hall of mirrors was seen during the opening sequence, and at the finale.
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Raoul Silva, the main villain, does not appear until around seventy minutes into this movie.
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The mug from which Q drinks in his lab has the letter "Q" from the game Scrabble printed on it, complete with the number "10", the letter's point value in the board game.
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Dame Judi Dench's seventh and final major appearance playing M. Dench has played the role of M for seventeen years from 1995 until 2012, her first being in GoldenEye (1995). This record ties with Bernard Lee, who played M for the same amount of time, except Lee appeared in eleven James Bond movies, while Dench appeared in seven. Additionally, this puts Dench at the same number of Bond movies as Sir Roger Moore, as well as Sir Sean Connery (if one counts the unofficial Bond movie Never Say Never Again (1983)) and Walter Gotell (who played the roles of Morzeny in From Russia with Love (1963), and then General Gogol for six movies consecutively from The Spy Who Loved Me (1977) to The Living Daylights (1987)). However, Dench played a cameo role in Spectre (2015) in a special video appearance.
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The marketing has been said to have gone to a new level with (Daniel Craig) appearing in several commercial television advertisements for product placements seen in this movie, such as Heineken, Omega watches, and Sony Electronics. However, this has been justified, Daniel Craig has said, "The simple fact is that, without them, we couldn't do it. It's unfortunate, but that's how it is. This movie costs a lot of money to make, it costs nearly as much again, if not more, to promote, so we go where we can."
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The London underground tube train crash that occurs when Bond chases Silva was filmed at Pinewood Studio's mammoth 007 Stage, which has been the filming home to most of the super-scale Bond set pieces of the past. For the crash, filmed on "The Catacombs Set", the crew built two full-size fabricated replica Tube train carriages, each weighing around five to seven tons, the real ones weigh around twenty-five to thirty tons. The Tube carriages were raised onto a track about twenty feet above the base of the set. Near the ceiling of the set, broken Tube tracks curved downwards, with a monorail supporting the carriages from above. The trains were then accelerated on the elevated track guided by the monorail as they veer off the tracks and crash through the catacombs ceiling, which was composed of breakaway elements. When the train crashed, it dismantled the majority of the 007 Stage. Digital visual effects were later added in post-production to supplement the practical special effects. It was too dangerous to allow people to stay on the soundstage during the filming of the crash, so eleven remotely-operated cameras were placed around the 007 Stage to cover the crash from various angles.
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This movie has a lot in common with The World Is Not Enough (1999). Both involve abduction victims left to their fate by M, who they view as a quasi-maternal figure, and M is forced to deal with the consequences of her decisions when said victims want revenge. They are also the only James Bond movies where M is actually part of the story, rather than just giving Bond his briefing and sending him on his way. Both feature scenes in Istanbul, Turkey, as well as a chase scene in London (a rarity for the franchise, despite London being in nearly every movie), an explosion at MI6, MI6 being temporarily relocated, Bond recovering from a shoulder injury sustained in the teaser, the introduction of a new Q, a female lackey, who is terrified of her male terrorist employer, Bond being held captive in a chair by the Big Bad, the Big Bad using Bond to get to M, Bond pursuing a villain underground, a helicopter destroying Bond's car, Bond using gas to blow up a helicopter, and the bad guy being impaled by a metallic object.
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The name of the World War II-era French song heard playing on Silva's island lair is "Boum!", and is sung by French singer and songwriter Charles Trenet. The song won the Grand Prix du Disque, and was released in 1938.
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The most successful James Bond movie at the international box office in the official film franchise's history. It grossed $100 million at the international box office in its first week. It also had the biggest opening weekend at the box office for a Bond movie in Britain.
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According to Dame Judi Dench, the secrecy surrounding the details of the plot were such that advance copies of the script were individually stamped, so they can be specifically traced to each official recipient in the event of negligent disclosure of plot details.
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Second unit director Alexander Witt and the second unit travelled to Shanghai, China to shoot establishing shots and driving sequences. The crew worked nights in the busy week leading up to the Chinese New Year to capture the exhilarating, ever-changing metropolis that is one of the most dynamic cities in the world. An aerial unit, piloted by Marc Wolff, was granted rare access to the sky above the city to shoot from a helicopter on loan from the Chinese government. Production designer Dennis Gassner and the art department worked to create the rest of the Chinese environment on soundstages at Pinewood Studios.
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Filming of one of Javier Bardem's first scenes - the interrogation of Silva by M and Bond at the new MI6 headquarters - had to be stopped in one of the early takes when Bardem interrupted the scene by excitedly proclaiming that he couldn't believe that he was making a movie with Dame Judi Dench and Daniel Craig.
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The four-year gap between the release of Quantum of Solace (2008) and this movie ties for the third-longest period between James Bond movies. This gap between movies also represents the longest time between movies without a casting change to the actor playing James Bond. Previous hiatuses between Licence to Kill (1989) and GoldenEye (1995) (the longest period between movies in the franchise), and then between Die Another Day (2002) and Casino Royale (2006) were both accompanied by casting changes to the actor playing James Bond. The gap between Spectre (2015) and No Time to Die (2020) is now in second place, at five years.
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Second time in the official James Bond franchise that Bond is seen with a beard, the first time was Pierce Brosnan in Die Another Day (2002). In both movies, the character only has the beard for a portion of the movie. In both instances, we see the beard being shaved.
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The Royal World Premiere of this movie marked a rare reunion for the families of James Bond producers Harry Saltzman and Albert R. Broccoli and author Ian Fleming on the franchise's 50th anniversary year. Since Saltzman was able to secure the movie rights for the 007 novels in 1962 from Fleming, given both men's shared experience as Intelligence operatives, the unique seating arrangement at Royal Albert Hall reflected that relationship. In the Royal Box adjacent to His Royal Highness Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall (Camilla Parker-Bowles), the surviving family of Ian Fleming, including niece Lucy Fleming, and cousin Sir Christopher Lee, who also served in British Intelligence, were seated alongside Saltzman's daughter Hilary Saltzman, son Steven Saltzman, and Canadian print and broadcast journalist David Giammarco, a longtime associate of the James Bond movies and author of the book "For Your Eyes Only: Behind the Scenes of the James Bond Films". The Gala Charity Premiere of this movie benefited retired members of Britain's Intelligence agencies, for which H.R.H. Prince Charles is England's Royal Patron.
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Bond's father's hunting rifle is a .500 caliber Nitro Express, an extremely powerful elephant gun. During the final shoot-out, Bond is shown firing it from the hip. Its recoil would make this a very foolish thing to do, and a human being struck by one of the bullets would not merely fall down. A shot placed at center-mass would explode the entire chest cavity, and likely blow the target's arms out of the shoulders.
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Development and production was delayed for almost nine months during 2010 to 2011 due to the bankruptcy and delayed sale of MGM, with the production being officially suspended on April 19, 2010. The press release from producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson for this movie, then known as "Bond 23", stated: "Due to the continuing uncertainty surrounding the future of MGM, and the failure to close a sale of the studio, we have suspended development on 'Bond 23' indefinitely. We do not know when development will resume, and do not have a date for the release of 'Bond 23'". During this period, some development and pre-production work continued on this movie, despite the cancelled financing, with the goal to have this James Bond movie in theaters for the 50th anniversary of the franchise. Production resumed in January 2011.
The computer mainframe room, in which Silva gives his introductory speech, was specially constructed so that it would be the right length for a one-take shot, in which Javier Bardem leisurely walks and ends up right at Bond when at the end of the speech. The other significant room in which Silva is seen is a plexiglass enclosure, which was nicknamed by Javier Bardem as a "Crystal Cage".
During the final assault on Skyfall Lodge, the downdraft from the helicopter (an Agusta Westland Merlin AW101) was so powerful, it blew the false teeth out of Javier Bardem's mouth.
Naomie Harris' mother is from Jamaica, where Ian Fleming wrote the James Bond stories at his Goldeneye estate. At thirty-five, at the start of filming, Harris is one of the oldest actresses to play a major Bond Girl. Honor Blackman is tied for eldest to ever play one, being thirty-seven at the time of filming Goldfinger (1964), and Maud Adams was also thirty-seven at the time of filming Octopussy (1983). Harris attended this movie's Royal World Premiere with twenty-six members of her family.
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The title is not a word taken from any Ian Fleming James Bond story. Screenwriters Neal Purvis and Robert Wade thought up the title, "Skyfall", at two in the morning. Neal and Robert have said: "We needed a haunting place name. I just plucked it out of the air, and it turned out to be something that struck a chord with the filmmakers." This is the only Bond movie where the team provided the title. The World Is Not Enough (1999)'s title was taken from a real-life Bond family motto, and was mentioned by Ian Fleming in the novel of On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969), while the title of Die Another Day (2002) was taken from a phrase in A.E. Housman's poem "A Shropshire Lad". Casino Royale (2006) and Quantum of Solace (2008) were titles taken from original Ian Fleming stories.
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The painting that Q (Ben Whishaw) and James Bond (Daniel Craig) view at the National Gallery is "The Fighting Temeraire" (1839) by J.M.W. Turner. His best known painting, it depicts H.M.S. Temeraire, one of the last 90-98 gun "second class" warships, which had played a distinguished role in the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805. In 1838, it was decommissioned and towed from Sheerness to Rotherhithe to be broken up for scrap. Turner's main motive of painting was to evoke a sense of loss in the demise of a ship that had once seen great glory. It is evocative of this movie's theme of the aging warriors M (Dame Judi Dench) and Bond, which is touched on again in M's quoting of Tennyson. The painting in the private sale is is Woman with a Fan (1919) by Italian artist Amedeo Modigliani. The reason for this being a private sale is that it was stolen from the Museum of Modern Art in Paris in May, 2010. This same painting appeared in Spectre (2015), hanging in Madleine's room at Blofeld's facility in Morocco.
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Javier Bardem was once offered a role in an earlier James Bond movie, perhaps even the role of Bond (though this is unlikely). Bardem told CinemaBlend, "Years ago, I was (offered Bond), I don't remember what movie it was for. But yeah, it just was not that time. I didn't feel that it was the time for me to do something like that, and also, I was doing something else, so I passed. This time, when I read it, I felt that it was very powerful material, and I wanted to join."
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The type of lizards seen in the pit at the Golden Dragon floating casino, are Komodo Dragons, or Komodo Monitors, their species genus is "Varanus komodoensis", being part of the Varanidae monitor lizard species family. They are the largest species of reptillian dragons located in the Indonesian Islands, and also the largest living species of lizard in the world, they can grow to a length of ten feet (three meters), and weigh up to around one hundred fifty pounds (sixty-eight kilograms). Track 13 of Thomas Newman's "Skyfall" score soundtrack is called "Komodo Dragon". The name of the casino where the dragons are seen, "The Golden Dragon Casino", references the lizards which are housed in it.
The train fight scene was supposed to shoot in India, with a lot of people travelling on the roof of the train. However, the Indian government would not give permission, saying that it would give a bad impression about India and its culture.
This is the first James Bond movie to make over $1 billion at the worldwide box office.
First time that an Academy Award winning-director (Sam Mendes, American Beauty (1999)) has directed a James Bond movie. The first Bond movie seen by Mendes was Live and Let Die (1973), and his favorite is From Russia with Love (1963). During pre-production, Mendes was originally hired as a consultant during the MGM bankruptcy period, so as to avoid a direct connection payment to Mendes from having been classified as a bona fide director to the production, and as such, requiring an official director's payment. Reportedly, Mendes was offered the director's job at a party by Daniel Craig. A meeting was then arranged for Mendes with the producers and things rolled on from there. As a boy, Mendes owned a die-cast Corgi Toys model car of Bond's Aston Martin DB5 car, which inspired him to include the vehicle in this movie. Around the time of Casino Royale (2006), Mendes originally thought Craig was miscast as Bond. Mendes told "Metro": "I was one of the people who said I didn't think he was the right casting. At the time, I was asked in an interview and I said, 'I'm not sure, I would advise him not to do it.'" With a rating of PG-13, this is also Mendes' first non-R-rated movie.
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The gun barrel sequence was re-shot specially for this movie, as it was in the previous movie. With this third Daniel Craig Bond movie, Craig has still never appeared in a traditional franchise gun barrel sequence shown at the start of the movie (the last movie to use the sequence at the beginning was Die Another Day (2002)). According to Sam Mendes, there was an attempt to put the gun barrel walk before the pre-title sequence, but it did not work out artistically. It was also put at the end of the movie, so as to be able to mark the Golden Anniversary of the franchise with Bond's 50th Anniversary logo. Daniel Craig is also the first actor to film three different gun barrel sequences, which depict Bond wearing different suits, and having different stances as he shoots. For the first time in the famous gun barrel sequence, Bond is seen wearing a grey suit, rather than a black one. Sir Roger Moore is the other Bond actor to have shot more than one gun barrel sequence, as he had filmed one for Live and Let Die (1973), which was re-used in The Man with the Golden Gun (1974), and eventually filmed a second one for The Spy Who Loved Me (1977), that would be re-used for the rest of the Bond movies starring Moore.
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Seventh James Bond movie where the villain resides in an island lair. Tiago Rodriguez, a.k.a. Raoul Silva's home is Hashima Island, an abandoned island near Nagasaki, Japan. The others were Dr. No (1962)'s Crab Key island; Largo's Palmyra Estate in the Bahamas, in Thunderball (1965); Blofeld's Japanese island volcano lair in You Only Live Twice (1967); Mr. Big's (Dr. Kananga's) fictitious Carribean island of San Monique, in Live and Let Die (1973); Elektra King and Renards' Kizkulesi Island (The Maiden's Tower) in Turkey's Bosphorus Sea, in The World Is Not Enough (1999); and Scaramanga's island in The Man with the Golden Gun (1974).
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Stuntman and James Bond stunt double Andy Lister performed the opening sequence's fall from the bridge into the river. Riggers were set up a crane on a train carriage, to hold a safety line. Andy then reacted to the gun shot by limply diving backwards off of the three hundred foot (ninety-two meter) drop. This jump stunt is a typical Bondian "Skyfall" jump synonymous with the franchise. Skyfall jumps having appeared regularly since The Spy Who Loved Me (1977), with others in Moonraker (1979), For Your Eyes Only (1981), Octopussy (1983), A View to a Kill (1985), The Living Daylights (1987), Licence to Kill (1989), GoldenEye (1995), Tomorrow Never Dies (1997), The World Is Not Enough (1999), Die Another Day (2002), and Quantum of Solace (2008).
Fourth time in an official Bond movie that M's house has been seen. The first time was M's (Bernard Lee's) manor "Quarterdeck" in On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969). The second and third times followed much later with M's (Dame Judi Dench's) houses in Casino Royale (2006) and Quantum of Solace (2008). This movie is the fifth time, when one counts the unofficial Casino Royale (1967), which also showed M's house.
Ralph Fiennes (Gareth Mallory), Rory Kinnear (Bill Tanner), and Ben Whishaw (Q), all now MI6 regular characters in the James Bond film franchise , have all portrayed "Hamlet" on the stage, on Broadway, The National Theatre, and The Old Vic, respectively.
It was initially speculated that James Bond veteran composer David Arnold would be providing the score for this movie, despite a long-running collaboration between director Sam Mendes and composer Thomas Newman. However, in January 2012, it was finally announced that Newman would, in fact, be composing the score. This marks only the sixth time (out of twenty-three movies) that a James Bond movie has not been scored by either Monty Norman, John Barry, or David Arnold. It is a myth that Arnold was unable to score this movie due to his duties as musical director for the 2012 London Olympics. In numerous interviews, he stated that Newman was simply chosen due to his ongoing work with Mendes. In October 2012, David Arnold revealed on Twitter that the producers had licensed some of his score from Casino Royale (2006) for this movie.
With his casting, Javier Bardem became the second Academy Award winner to play a major Bond villain. The first was Christopher Walken in A View to a Kill (1985), who had won an Oscar for The Deer Hunter (1978). Both Academy Awards were for Best Actor in a Supporting Role, Bardem's statuette was for No Country for Old Men (2007). Bardem is not the only cast member in this movie to have a Best Supporting Acting Oscar, Dame Judi Dench has one for Shakespeare in Love (1998).
Daniel Craig was injured during the rehearsal period for this movie, whereupon rescheduling took place requiring two weeks rest for his injuries. Craig was not injured during principal photography. This is the second time in the franchise's history that a delay has been forced by an injury to the actor playing James Bond. The first was on Die Another Day (2002), where Pierce Brosnan blew his knee out during filming of the opening hovercraft sequence, shutting down production for around one to two weeks.
Skyfall Lodge is not a real-life building, but a purpose-built exterior set, made of plywood and plaster stone. The custom-built artificial house in this movie's story is a countryside residence. Its setting is in Glencoe, Scotland, but the filming location for it was Hankley Common in southwest Surrey, England.
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This marks the first time the "f" word is audibly said in a Bond movie. M exclaims in the third act that she "really f***ed this up."
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Tonia Sotiropoulou, who appears as a minor Bond Girl early in the movie, had auditioned for the other Bond Girl role of Sévérine, but lost out to Bérénice Marlohe. After casting director Debbie McWilliams suggested that the production might be able to find another part for her, her management company, Back Door Management, resubmitted her for this movie, and she was successful. Tonia's Bond Girl character has no name, and is billed in the credits only as "Bond's Lover". Also, her brief role is entirely mute, making her the first Bond Girl to visibly consummate a relationship with Bond (as opposed to one that is only implied), without saying one word.
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The title was touted in the media during 2011 as either "Carte Blanche" or "Red Sky at Night". Previously, in 2010, it was reported that a competition would run to pick a title for this movie from the remaining Ian Fleming story titles, the two most popular being "Risico" and "The Property of a Lady". In addition, "The Hildebrand Rarity" had also been touted as a possible title. Around October 2011, the new rumored title became "Skyfall" as the internet domain names JamesBond-Skyfall.com and Skyfallthefilm.com were registered prior to any official announcement by the movie's producers, and financiers of this movie, MGM and Sony Pictures. The "Skyfall" title proved to be correct, with producer Michael G. Wilson calling it "the worst kept secret in London" at the November 3, 2011 press conference. At that event, it was announced that this movie would not be related to any previously published Ian Fleming James Bond novel or short story.
Second consecutive James Bond movie to have a vehicle chase in the opening sequence. This vehicle chase was originally written and intended for The World Is Not Enough (1999), but was scrapped, as the movie's story had become too expansive. This movie's vehicle chase included a fleet of twelve Land Rover Defenders, and sixteen Audi A5s, which were all modified and reinforced in different ways, to the requirements of the stunt and camera departments. Two of the Defenders had driving "pods" fitted to the roof of Miss Eve Moneypenny's (eight feet above the ground) vehicle, allowing her to concentrate on delivering dialogue, while being driven by former "Stig" Ben Collins at fifty miles per hour (eighty kilometers per hour) through the packed streets of Istanbul. Multiple British rally car champion Mark Higgins was Harris' driving double for wide-angle shots of the Land Rover weaving through traffic. Other modifications, to the vehicles for the stunt sequence, include: spread wheels to give greater stability, conversion from manual to automatic, modified engines to enhance power, and the addition of interior roll cages for protection and safety.
The Paddock Tank (the Exterior Tank) at Pinewood Studios doubled as the exterior of the Shanghai Golden Dragon Casino. The set was lit by three hundred floating lanterns, and two thirty-foot high dragon heads. Twelve artisans were flown in from China, to create the authentic structures. They were made from wound steel cables, silk fabric, and lit from within, by four hundred light bulbs.
For the first time in the EON Productions official film franchise, the first and last name of M, Gareth Mallory, is revealed (albeit before he becomes M). Bernard Lee's M's first name, Miles, was spoken aloud in The Spy Who Loved Me (1977), and his successor Robert Brown has been confirmed by producers to be the same Miles, and not Admiral Hargreaves (played by Brown in The Spy Who Loved Me (1977)) as some fans believe. Neither Dame Judi Dench's M's first nor last names were ever revealed, although in Casino Royale (2006), Bond says that one of her names does begin with the letter M before being cut off by her (and some drafts of the screenplay for GoldenEye (1995) give her name as "Barbara Mawdsley", but it was never spoken aloud in the final movie, and thus is not considered canon).
With the use of Quantum of Solace (2008), an original Ian Fleming James Bond story title, there now remains only four unused original Fleming titles that could possibly have been used as a title for this movie. These are "The Property of a Lady", "The Hildebrand Rarity", "Risico", "007 in New York" (a.k.a. "Agent 007 in New York"). However, none of these were used in favor of the original title, "Skyfall".
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The names of the leaked MI6 agents in the YouTube video are names of members of the production crew, though the corresponding faces shown are of actors. The names used include: art director Paul Inglis, assistant executive producer Andy Surry, and special effects technician Steve Benelisha. The other two MI6 agent names, Mansur Dimka and Ben Daheer, appear not to be based on anyone in particular. The handle of the YouTube poster posting the video in this movie is "vials", which is an anagram for "Silva", the last name of villain Raoul Silva. Also, the runtime on the YouTube video is 0:07, a reference to James Bond's code number of 007.
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This is the only James Bond movie where there is no leading Bond Girl. Dame Judi Dench, as M, has the pivotal female role by participating in the climax, and holding the emotional crux of the story, but she is not a Bond Girl, since she and Bond don't have a romantic relationship. The secondary Bond Girls in the movie are played by Naomie Harris as Miss Eve Moneypenny; Bérénice Marlohe as Sévérine, and Tonia Sotiropoulou as Bond's Lover. Freida Pinto, Olivia Wilde, Rachel Weisz, Esti Ginzburg, Margarita Levieva, Alice Eve, Ana Ventura, Emilia Fox, and Ebru Akel were rumored or considered to appear as Bond Girls in the movie. Reportedly, this is the first film in the official franchise, where production notes and publicity materials generally refer to the leading actresses in the movie as "Bond Women", and not as "Bond Girls".
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The first James Bond movie to be released in the IMAX format. Unlike most movies blown up for an IMAX release, the film did not go through their DMR (Digital Media Remastering) process, as cinematographer Roger Deakins thought that the film's image quality was high enough to make it unnecessary. Deakins has said they "...shot 2.35:1 (aspect ratio), but because of the size of the chip, you have so much space top and bottom, that basically I shot it for both formats. The IMAX was clean, and the image quality is fantastic, because you're using the full size of the chip. So I had seen a lot of tests, and was blown away by the IMAX. We did a 4K finish, and it's down rez'd to 2K after that. It quite surprised me, the fantastic quality." Movies shot in IMAX have an aspect ratio of 1.44:1 which takes up the entire IMAX screen. This movie wasn't shot in IMAX, but the aspect ratio of the IMAX "Skyfall" prints, is 1.90:1 compared to standard theater "Skyfall" prints, which have an aspect ratio of 2.35:1. The IMAX image is twenty-six percent larger at the top and bottom of the frame than the screen image in conventional theaters, thereby giving audiences a taller depth of field to view.
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This movie has been said to use a large amount of computer graphics imagery, around 500 CGI shots, the most since Die Another Day (2002). A large amount of the visual effects in this movie were created by around 850 staff of Technicolor owned post-production house The Moving Picture Company, 250 in Bangalore, and 600 in London. Animators, graphic artists, visual effects technicians, and other visual effects professionals worked for eight months creating thousands of frames, computer animations, graphic insertions, and high-end visual effects integrating all of the digital content for the movie.
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Raoul Silva (Javier Bardem) is an ex-MI6 agent. It's not the first time that a rogue ex-agent has been the main villain in a James Bond movie. GoldenEye (1995)'s main villain was Alec Trevelyan (Sean Bean, a former fellow agent whose code number had been 006. Die Another Day (2002), Casino Royale (2006), and Quantum of Solace (2008) had MI6 turncoats as assistant villains.
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Stuntman Gary Powell, and other members of his family, have worked on every EON Productions official film franchise James Bond movie since Dr. No (1962). Father and uncle Nosher Powell and Dinny Powell worked on all the early 1960s and 1970s Bonds with Sir Sean Connery and George Lazenby; brother Greg Powell worked on the 1970s and 1980s Bonds with Sir Roger Moore and Timothy Dalton, and Gary has worked on all of the 1990s and 2000s Bonds with Pierce Brosnan and Daniel Craig, as well as this one, the first Bond movie of the 2010s.
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Miss Eve Moneypenny and M's office at the end is a direct replica of the same set from Dr. No (1962).
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The theme song sung by Adele is the first Bond song to share the same name as the movie's title since Madonna's Die Another Day (2002), and the first Daniel Craig James Bond movie to do so. The "Skyfall" song was released on Friday, October 5, 2012, at 0:07 a.m. BST/London time (7:07 p.m. EDT on October 4), the exact 50th anniversary of the launch of Dr. No (1962). A ninety-second version of the song was leaked on-line not long after Adele officially announced on Twitter that she was the artist singing the title song. The song was recorded at London's Abbey Road Studios with a full orchestra.
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In preparing for his role, Javier Bardem had the script translated into his native Spanish to better understand his character, which director Sam Mendes cited as being a sign of the actor's commitment to this movie.
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Dame Judi Dench and Sam Mendes previously worked together in the theatre on Anton Chekhov's "The Cherry Orchard", while Daniel Craig and Mendes previously worked together on Road to Perdition (2002). Mendes and cinematographer Roger Deakins have also worked together previously on Revolutionary Road (2008) and Jarhead (2005). Craig and Ben Whishaw previously worked together on three movies: Layer Cake (2004), Enduring Love (2004), and The Trench (1999). This movie is the second time Javier Bardem has worked with director of photography Roger Deakins. The first was No Country for Old Men (2007). Bardem featured as the main villain in both movies.
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Javier Bardem's casting marks the first time that a Spanish actor has played the lead villain in a James Bond movie, while Bardem is the third Spaniard to play any villain, after henchmen Simón Andreu in Die Another Day (2002), and Fernando Guillén Cuervo in Quantum of Solace (2008). Bardem's villain name of "Raoul Silva" is actually an alias, the character's real name being Tiago Rodriguez. "Silva" or "Da Silva", is the most common surname in Portuguese-speaking countries, such as Portugal and Brazil. Its meaning is derived from the Latin word "silva", meaning "forest", or "woodland". It is also widespread in regions of the former Portuguese Empire in America (from Galicia (Spain)), Africa and Asia, including India and Sri Lanka. Movement of people has led to the name being used in many places. The film's writers wrote the script with Bardem in mind, and Bardem had the film's script translated into his native language of Spanish, so as to achieve a better understanding of the story and his character. The first Bond movie Bardem saw was Moonraker (1979), its henchman Jaws being his favorite Bond villain.
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Third consecutive James Bond movie dealing with terrorism. The central type of terrorism depicted in this movie is cyberterrorism. In an interview in the tie-in documentary Everything or Nothing (2012), producer Barbara Broccoli commented on how 9/11 made the producers think about doing something more serious, and that it might be time to move on from the Pierce Brosnan style of Bond movies. In another interview, Broccoli added: "In terms of 9/11, we thought Die Another Day (2002) had become too fantastical. That's something that's happened in previous Bond films along the way. There comes a time when you have to recalibrate the tone of the films to fit the times we live in."
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Final consecutive Bond script written by the screenwriting team of Purvis and Wade. Neal Purvis and Robert Wade have been penning Bond scripts for fifteen years and five movies, starting with The World Is Not Enough (1999). They worked on Die Another Day (2002), Casino Royale (2006), and Quantum of Solace (2008), and decided to move on after this movie.
When it came time to casting Silva's mercenaries, director Sam Mendes wanted actors rather than stuntmen. In order to find actors that could fit the physical bill, stunt coordinator Gary Powell set up a stunt training camp. Starting with forty-two men, the group had to learn how to throw punches, react to punches, hold guns, and react to being shot. The group was eventually narrowed down to the seven men who looked most natural.
With the cooperation and assistance of the London Mayor's Office and Transportation For London, the production was able to shut down Vauxhall Bridge and Millbank for a scene where M witnesses a terrorist attack on MI6 Headquarters. The explosion of the MI6 Headquarters was represented by a few fireworks on the day, but then an MI6 model miniature was built at one-third scale on the backlot at Pinewood Studios, where long-time James Bond special effects expert Chris Corbould, this movie's special effects and miniature effects supervisor, used twenty-eight explosives to replicate the attack.
This is the eleventh time in the official James Bond franchise that Bond is seen playing a game or entering in some kind of sport or activity with the main villain. Here, Bond is forced to partake in a shooting contest with Raoul Silva, using reproduction percussion cap Ardesa 1871 duelling pistols. Bond's previous rounds with villains included playing golf with Goldfinger (1964), Texas Hold 'Em poker with Le Chiffre in Casino Royale (2006), Baccarat and skeet shooting with Emilio Largo in Thunderball (1965), playing backgammon with Kamal Khan in Octopussy (1983), tarot cards with Mr. Big (Dr. Kananga) in Live and Let Die (1973), pheasant shooting with Drax in Moonraker (1979), horse riding with Max Zorin in A View to a Kill (1985), toy board war games with Brad Whitaker in The Living Daylights (1987), fencing with Gustave Graves in Die Another Day (2002), and pistols duelling and funhouse games with Scaramanga in The Man with the Golden Gun (1974). It's the twelfth time if one counts the World Domination video game with Maximillian Largo in the unofficial Never Say Never Again (1983).
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This is only the fourth James Bond movie in the official franchise which doesn't allow, for marketing purposes, the formation of the 007 symbol within the film's title wording by way of forming one or two of the "0"'s. The others include Thunderball (1965), Live and Let Die (1973), and The Living Daylights (1987). It's the fifth, when one includes the unofficial Never Say Never Again (1983).
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This movie was released in late 2012 in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the James Bond film franchise. Previous Bond movies released in similar celebrations include: Die Another Day (2002) in the franchise's 40th anniversary year, Tomorrow Never Dies (1997) in the 35th anniversary year, The Living Daylights (1987) in the 25th anniversary year, and The Spy Who Loved Me (1977) in the 15th anniversary year. This movie world premiered within a couple of weeks of the 50th anniversary of the launch of Dr. No (1962) on May 10, 1962. Also, a new Bond documentary was made and released to tie in and celebrate the Golden anniversary of the franchise. It was called "Everything or Nothing (2012)", and it premiered on October 5, 2012.
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The opening few seconds are an homage to the traditional gun barrel openings of previous James Bond movies. The long, dark corridor with a bright light at its end, is similar to the shape of a gun barrel. Bond walks into frame from off-stage holding a gun, and is shillouetted at the end of the corridor. Just the first three notes of the Bond theme are then played.
The komodo dragons in the floating casino scenes were completely computer generated. The difficulties in filming with components that weren't actually there were sufficient to convince director Sam Mendes never to use CGI-created characters ever again.
Ola Rapace played henchman "Patrice", who, despite being on-screen for more than fifteen minutes in the pre-titles chase and Shanghai scenes, doesn't speak a single word of dialogue. Ola is the ex-husband of Noomi Rapace, who starred in the Swedish adaptation The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2009). Daniel Craig starred in its American adaptation, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011). Rapace is the fourth Scandinavian actor to play a James Bond villain in three Bond movies. Mads Mikkelsen played the villain "Le Chiffre" in Casino Royale (2006), Jesper Christensen played the villain "Mr. White" in that movie, as well as Quantum of Solace (2008), and Ulrich Thomsen appeared in The World Is Not Enough (1999).
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The wounded agent that James Bond tries to save in the opening sequence is named Ronson. This is also the name of a popular brand of cigarette lighter used by Bond in Ian Fleming's novels.
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When Ralph Fiennes confirmed that his character is a government agent, it led to rampant speculation that his character would be the new "M" in the franchise, and that Dench's "M" would be depicted as retiring. None of that was confirmed, but Fiennes' confirmation of his role's nature put an end to speculation that he would be playing Bond's old nemesis, Ernst Stavro Blofeld. In the end, the speculation proved to be true, as Fiennes' character, Gareth Mallory, a former Lieutenant Colonel in the British Army, and the Chairman of the Intelligence and Security Committee, becomes M at the end of this movie. Fiennes' M is the first time a male has played the part since Robert Brown in Licence to Kill (1989).
The explosion sequence in the climax was shot over two consecutive nights. It's the second consecutive James Bond movie where the climax results in the blowing-up of a landmark building. In Quantum of Solace (2008), it was a facility in the desert, here, it's a mansion in the Scottish countryside. Ironically, prior to the big bang, Javier Bardem was banned from smoking at the on-set location, because of the fire risk of the dry grass in the field, where the set was located.
This movie featured a recurring line of dialogue, "The old ways are usually the best." It occurred twice, said by Miss Eve Moneypenny (Naomie Harris) and Kincade (Albert Finney).
This movie was originally going to be shot in six countries, but budget cutbacks in January 2012 resulted in filming primarily taking place in the U.K., on-location and in studio. Additional shooting was done in Turkey and China. Glencoe in the Scottish Highlands replaced Duntrune Castle in Argyll, Scotland, as the location for the climatic action scenes, though some of that was filmed at Surrey's Hankley Common in England. Scenes planned to be originally shot in India, or South Africa, were instead filmed in Turkey. In the end, this movie was filmed in five countries: England, Scotland, China, Turkey, and Japan. In Japan, just a small amount of filming was done on Hashima Island.
Fourth James Bond movie to film in Scotland after From Russia with Love (1963) (various locations in the Argyll and Bute region), The Spy Who Loved Me (1977) (the Faslane Naval base), and The World Is Not Enough (1999) (Eilean Donan Castle at Kyle of Lochalsh in the Highlands). This is the fifth Bond movie to shoot in Scotland, if including the unofficial Casino Royale (1967), which shot in Killin, Stirling. The first actor to play James Bond on the big screen was a Scot, Sir Sean Connery. The Scottish Dalness Estate once belonged to the Fleming family, and Ian Fleming loved the Scottish region so much, that he gave James Bond a Scottish genealogical lineage, the character's father, Andrew, coming from Glencoe, where this movie filmed, alongside the Buachaille Etive Mor mountain. In On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969), James Bond was seen wearing a kilt.
At the Spanish premiere at Madrid's Español Theatre on October 29, 2012, many big red carpet stars of this movie, including Javier Bardem, held posters in protest against the dismissal of theater workers during the premiere.
A total of twenty Honda CRF250R motorcycles were used for the opening motorcycle chase. The sequence is notable for being performed on narrow rooftop tracks, and without any helmets or heavy-duty protective gear. The "Police" and "Street Merchant" bikes were ridden by stunt riders, and due to the high speed of the chase, the stunt crew teams filming it, also rode the bikes carrying the cameras. For this movie, the Honda motorcycles were modified especially for the stunt sequence by the special effects team of Chris Corbould.
Second James Bond movie, following Die Another Day (2002) to feature four Oscar-winning or Oscar-nominated cast members: Dame Judi Dench, Javier Bardem, Ralph Fiennes, and Albert Finney.
Although this movie had the largest amount of product placement of any James Bond movie compared to any before it, it was the first in twenty-three years (since Licence to Kill (1989)) that did not either introduce a brand-new car model, nor highlight one in a major action sequence. Every Bond movie since Die Another Day (2002) had featured a wide variety of vehicles produced by Ford's Premier Automotive Group, which at the time, included Aston Martin, Land Rover, Jaguar, and Volvo. After Quantum of Solace (2008) was filmed, however, Ford entirely disbanded its portfolio of foreign makes, and along with it, the company's product-placement arrangement. As such, no Fords are seen in this movie, and existing Land Rover and Jaguar-produced vehicles are featured only in brief shots. The only car shown at length in this movie is Bond's famous 1964 Aston Martin DB5, first seen in Goldfinger (1964), and featured in a total of six Bond movies. As an icon of the franchise, as well as an automotive classic, the DB5's presence, in the movies, has never been part of a product placement deal (although the company did pay to place its modern Vanquish and DBS models in earlier movies). This is the last modern Bond movie, as of 2015, to have this distinction, as Aston Martin introduced its then-new DB10 model as part of its promotion deal for Spectre (2015).
John Cleese was reportedly not asked to reprise his role as Q. He later gave an interview to the Radio times, hinting that he was dropped from his role partly because film bosses wanted to please audiences in Asia.
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Third James Bond movie to film in Istanbul, Turkey. The first was From Russia with Love (1963), and the second was The World Is Not Enough (1999). This shares two of the same filming locations that the classic James Bond movie From Russia with Love (1963) utilized: Turkey and Scotland (although the Scottish scenes in From Russia with Love (1963) were not set in the country). The movie was also once rumored to be titled "Red Sky at Night", the word "red" evoking Russia, or the old sailors' warning referring to a red sky being a natural sign to stay in port. Turkish locations that the movie shares with From Russia with Love (1963), include: Istanbul's Sultanahmet Square and the Hagia Sophia Mosque, now a museum. Producer Barbara Broccoli maintains that Istanbul was Ian Fleming's favorite city.
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This the only movie in the James Bond film franchise that has M shooting a gun, with both people portraying the character doing so.
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James Bond (Daniel Craig) is given a Walther PPK/S 9mm short firearm by Q (Ben Whishaw). The Walther PPK is considered the most popular, and widely known Bond gun, since it is the one he has used the most. Originally, Bond used a Beretta, but that was later replaced with the Walther PPK. The handgun he has uses hand recognition coded to his palm prints. Timothy Dalton's Bond used a weapon with the same feature in Licence to Kill (1989).
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The traditional end-of-movie James Bond official series coda "James Bond Will Return" was included during the closing credits.
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While speaking via microphones in "The Golden Dragon Casino", James Bond (Daniel Craig) warns Miss Eve Moneypenny (Naomie Harris) to stop touching her ear. This is a reference to Casino Royale (2006), where Bond warned Agent Carter (Joseph Millson) to stop touching his ear while speaking to him.
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Early into his casting, Javier Bardem told director Sam Mendes that he wanted to make some particular changes to his own appearance, notably in his hair and eye color. When Bardem showed up on set on his first day of filming in his Silva make-up and effects, he wasn't recognized.
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This is the twenty-third James Bond movie in the EON Productions official franchise, and the twenty-fifth theatrically released James Bond movie, including the unofficial movies Casino Royale (1967) and Never Say Never Again (1983). It is also the twenty-sixth James Bond movie, if counting the television episode, Climax! (1954) season one, episode three, "Casino Royale". Also, Skyfall's associated video game, 007 Legends (2012), which has a "Skyfall" mission, is also the twenty-third title in its James Bond video game series.
Screenwriter Peter Morgan left the production when development was suspended due to MGM's bankruptcy. Morgan later declared that ideas from his first draft were still retained by the Logan, Purvis, and Wade screenwriting team, including this movie's "big hook". Character and plot details from the script were kept under tight wraps during principal photography, with the names and identities of several characters, such as those played by Ralph Fiennes, Ben Whishaw, Naomie Harris, and Albert Finney, being kept a secret for several months. The script was heavily revised by John Logan, even throughout filming. When filming wrapped, it had been revised thirteen times since the third draft.
The climax of the opening chase sequence takes place at the breathtaking Varda Bridge, about an hour's travel (give or take, depending on travelling speed) out of Adana, in southern Turkey. The stone arch structure is also known by several other names, including: Alman Köprüsü (German Viaduct), Koca Köprüthe (Big Viaduct), the Varda Viaduct, and the Giaour Dere Viaduct. Construction was started in 1905 and was completed in 1916, the bridge being around five hundred seventy feet (one hundred seventy-four meters) long and three hundred twenty-two feet (ninety-eight meters) high. The viaduct was originally designed and built by Imperial German engineers for the former Ottoman Empire, as part of the Istanbul-Baghdad Railway Project.
When Q delivers the Walther PPK and passport to Bond in the National Gallery in London, the painting behind him is Joseph Wright of Derby's "An Experiment on a Bird in the Air Pump (1768)", featuring a natural philosopher, a forerunner to a modern scientist, demonstrating an experiment to curious on-lookers. This fits Q's role as scientific research and development for S.I.S., MI6, and 007.
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The meaning and relevance of the title, is that it refers to "Skyfall Lodge" ("Skyfall Glencoe", or "Skyfall House*), the name of James Bond's Scottish childhood ancestral home. In the books, Ian Fleming gave James Bond a real-life lineage to the Bonds of Peckham. The real-life Bond family motto "Orbis non sufficit" ("The World is not enough") was used in the novel of On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969), and as a title for The World Is Not Enough (1999). The Bond Family Arms were once displayed prominently in St. Giles Church in Camberwell, but were destroyed in a fire in the 1800s. Similarly, an explosion of fire is the fate of "Skyfall" in this movie. This movie forms the third part of an unofficial trilogy in the James Bond franchise, dealing with Bond's ancestry, the first and second parts being On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969) and The World Is Not Enough (1999). Producer Barbara Broccoli has said that the title "has some emotional context which will be revealed in the film." This was also the case with Quantum of Solace (2008).
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First James Bond movie in twenty-three years where a "traditional" franchise M's office is seen, the last time was in Licence to Kill (1989). It's also the first time in the franchise that the old "traditional" and new "modern" types of M offices have been seen in the same movie. In fact, there are three M's offices in this movie, the old "traditional' type, the new "modern" MI6 type, as seen in the franchise since GoldenEye (1995), and M's temporary office in the underground bunker.
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This movie marks the return of title designer Daniel Kleinman, who did the opening titles and gun barrel sequences from GoldenEye (1995) to Casino Royale (2006). In the previous movie, Kleinman was replaced by U.S. special effects company MK12. This is Kleinman's sixth collaboration as title designer in the franchise, and his second one in a James Bond movie starring Daniel Craig.
For a long time in development and pre-production, this movie was simply known as "Bond 23". Reportedly, other titles that were considered for the movie were "A Killing Moon", "Once Upon a Spy", and "Silver Bullet". Falsely rumored titles that were touted in the media during 2011 were "Carte Blanche" and "Red Sky at Night". Previously, in 2010, it was reported that a competition would run to pick a title for this movie from the remaining Ian Fleming story titles, the two most popular being "Risico" and "The Property of a Lady". In addition, "The Hildebrand Rarity" had also been touted as a possible title.
The movie's soundtrack, composed by Thomas Newman, features the most tracks (thirty) for a James Bond movie score. The previous record holder in the official franchise had been Casino Royale (2006) with twenty-five, and next is Quantum of Solace (2008) with twenty-four. The previous record holder for any Bond movie, and now second, is the unofficial Never Say Never Again (1983), which had twenty-six tracks. The "Skyfall" album is the second time that a James Bond soundtrack has not featured the title song ("Skyfall", sung by Adele). The first time was Chris Cornell's title song "You Know My Name", not appearing on the Casino Royale (2006) soundtrack. This movie's end titles utilized composer David Arnold's arrangement ("The Name's Bond... James Bond") of Monty Norman's "James Bond Theme", but this also does not feature on the soundtrack. This movie's score also contains interpolations of Monty Norman's original "James Bond Theme". The whole score on the soundtrack is composed and conducted by Thomas Newman, except for the "Komodo Dragon" track, which is an instrumental interpolation of this movie's "Skyfall" theme song. This is also the first Daniel Craig Bond movie to make use of Norman's original "James Bond Theme" throughout the entire movie (in Casino Royale (2006), the fully orchestrated version was played during the end credits, and in Quantum of Solace (2008), during the gun barrel sequence, and at the start of the end credits).
October 5, 2012 was "Global James Bond Day". It was created by the production to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the James Bond film franchise and as a promotional tie-in for this movie's release. According to the official website, "Global James Bond Day" featured "Worldwide events celebrating Bond's golden anniversary and included a global online and live charity auction event organized by Christie's in London, a global survey to discover the favorite Bond film country by country, a film retrospective at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City, a Music of Bond night in Los Angeles, California, hosted by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and Designing 007: 50 Years of James Bond Style (in Toronto)."
For exterior scenes shot in Whitehall, halfway through the chase between James Bond and Tiago Rodriguez, a.k.a. Raoul Silva, there were one hundred background vehicles, three hundred film crew, seven hundred fifty extras, and massive multiple government agency bureaucracy co-operation. Permissions, negotiations, and authorizations for the London chase sequence were permitted from such offices of English officialdom as the Westminster City Council, Transport For London (TFL) and TFL Buses, the Met and CHX Police, The London Underground, Network Rail, Herts Traffic Management Systems, the The Ministry of Defence, The Royal Parks, and The British Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
Gadgets featured in this movie include: a tiny radio tracking device; an N.F.C. (Near field communication) enabled Sony Xperia T smart phone ("The Bond Phone"); an Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra Mid-Sized Chronometer watch; an Agusta Westland Merlin AW101 helicopter, with a public address (PA) system fitted on its undercarriage to play music; an original silver-birch Aston Martin DB5 car, with various gadgets including an ejector seat (unused) and two 20mm Browning Machine Gun headlights; a Sony VAIO laptop computer; a Sony Xperia tablet; and a hand recognition Walther PPK/S 9mm short firearm, with a palm-sensitive hammer coded to James Bond's palm prints.
Reference to "Station H" in this movie referred to MI6's Hong Kong office.
Just prior to post-production lock-off, about ten minutes of footage were cut out of this movie due to the extensively long running time. These scenes and sequences include MI6 agents after the MI6 Headquarters explosion; a funeral procession for MI6 agents; Sévérine at Shanghai International Airport; an M and Mallory scene; early scenes with M's assistant Vanessa; Bond running through Regent's Park; and scenes involving Sévérine's activities.
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Numerous individual Academy Awards totalled from the cast and crew is as follows. Crew: director Sam Mendes (one win), cinematographer Roger Deakins (twelve nominations), first draft of script by Peter Morgan (two nominations), final script by John Logan (three nominations), composer Thomas Newman (twelve nominations), designer Dennis Gassner (one win and three more nominations), and Chris Corbould on special effects (one win). Cast: Javier Bardem (two nominations, one win), Ralph Fiennes (two nominations), Albert Finney (five nominations) and Dame Judi Dench (five nominations and one win) making at least forty-one nominations and five wins.
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First James Bond movie to have two separate train action sequences involving different trains. From Russia with Love (1963), Live and Let Die (1973), The Spy Who Loved Me (1977), Octopussy (1983), and GoldenEye (1995) all had just the one locomotive. This movie is also the second Bond movie to have a rooftop fight on a train, the first was Octopussy (1983). Also, the Charing Cross Underground Station was used for location shooting for the underground stations seen in the movie: Temple and Westminster.
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M (Dame Judi Dench) mentions that she oversaw MI6's Hong Kong operations until 1997, even though Dench's first appearance as M was in GoldenEye (1995). The reason for this apparent contradiction is that the James Bond franchise was reset, or rebooted, beginning with Casino Royale (2006), and Dench has actually portrayed two separate versions of the same character.
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The second movie in the 007 film franchise in which James Bond cries. In On Our Majesty's Secret Service (1969), he cries when his wife, Tracy (Dame Diana Rigg), is shot and killed by Ernst Stavro Blofeld (Telly Savalas) and Irma Bunt (Ilse Steppat).
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The exploding MI6 building was actually a painstakingly produced model. (Duh!)
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First Daniel Craig James Bond movie not to feature the character of American CIA agent Felix Leiter, as portrayed by Jeffrey Wright in Casino Royale (2006), Quantum of Solace (2008), and No Time to Die (2020).
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To prepare for the gruelling physical demands of her action role as Miss Eve Moneypenny, Naomie Harris was given a personal trainer and worked out for around two months, for two hours a day, five days a week. For this, she did yoga, kickboxing, running, and circuit training. Also, for one day of the week, she did combat fighting training; for one to two days of the week, she did stunt driving training, and for three days a week, she fired guns on a shooting range, learning to shoot machine guns and Walther PPKs.
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Since Dr. No (1962), this is only the second time in the Bond franchise where three new cast members, playing recurring characters, have been introduced simultaneously in the same movie. In GoldenEye (1995), three new cast members were introduced in three recurring roles. They were Pierce Brosnan as James Bond, Dame Judi Dench as M, and Samantha Bond as Miss Moneypenny. In this movie, there are also three, they are Ralph Fiennes as M, Ben Whishaw as Q, and Naomie Harris as Miss Eve Moneypenny. In The Living Daylights (1987), two new cast members, playing recurring characters, were introduced, Timothy Dalton as James Bond and Caroline Bliss as Miss Moneypenny.
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A sizable amount of this movie's story takes place below London's street surface, an underground environment that is based on what was historically known as "The Churchill Bunker System". During World War II, many government offices were relocated underground for protection from German bombing during "The Blitz". Here, after MI6 Headquarters is the subject of a terrorist attack, M makes the decision to relocate underground, just like Sir Winston Churchill did during World War II.
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This movie represents the 10th anniversary of the now regular "Bond On Set" book, a photo record of the filming of a James Bond movie, with pictures that are shot by Bond regular stills photographer Greg Williams. The "Skyfall" "Bond On Set" book is the fourth to be published, the first was in 2002 with the Die Another Day (2002) "Bond On Set" book. Prior to this, there had been "Making of" books for Bond movies, such as for GoldenEye (1995) and Tomorrow Never Dies (1997).
Filming at Pinewood Studios utilized thirty-one different sets on eight different soundstages including the gigantic "007 Stage". Major sets included the Golden Dragon Casino on D Stage and the Paddock Lot, the exterior of the Dead City Island on the North Lot, and the interior of MI6's underground bunker headquarters on the "007 Stage", the latter taking nine weeks, and two hundred fifty crew to build the set.
Several new books on James Bond were released in 2012, many around the time of early October 2012, a few weeks before this movie was released, and around the time that the franchise celebrated its 50th Golden Anniversary on October 5, 2012. The books include "Bond on Bond" by Sir Roger Moore; "The James Bond Archives" by Paul Duncan; "Bond On Set: Filming Skyfall" by Greg Williams; "LIFE: 50 Years of James Bond" by the editors of LIFE Books; "James Bond 50 Years of Movie Posters" by DK Publishing; "The Music of James Bond" by Jon Burlingame; "James Bond Unmasked" by Bill Desowitz; "All About Bond" by Terry O'Neill; "Amazing & Extraordinary Facts - James Bond" by Michael Paterson; "The World of James Bond: From Dr. No to Skyfall" by Luke Quantrill; "Ken Adam Designs the Movies: James Bond and Beyond" by Christopher Frayling and Sir Ken Adam; and "The Many Lives and Deaths of James Bond: From Casino Royale to Skyfall" by Nader Elhefnawy; "James Bond: The Unofficial Reference to the Man, the Books, the Movies, and the Man Who Invented It All" by Jennifer Warner and LifeCaps; "How to Live the James Bond Lifestyle: The Complete Seminar" by Paul Kyriazi; the second 2012 edition of "James Bond 007: The Definitive Guide" by Paul Fleming; the second edition of "James Bond Drinks: The Complete Guide to the Drinks of James Bond" by David Leigh and "Essential James Bond Quotes" by William Rogers, and "A Brief Guide to James Bond" by Nigel Cawthorne.
The scene where Tiago Rodriguez, a.k.a. Raoul Silva, challenges James Bond to a shooting contest was taken from the book "The Man With The Golden Gun".
When Gareth Mallory (Ralph Fiennes) is discussing a potential retirement plan with M, he says that she would be awarded "D.C.M.G. with honours". "D.C.M.G." stands for "Dame Commander of the Most Distinguished Order of St. Michael and St. George", a British order of chivalry founded on April 28, 1818, by George, Prince Regent, later King George IV, while he was acting as regent for his father, King George III. It is awarded to men and women who hold high office, or who render extraordinary or important non-military service in a foreign country, and can also be conferred for important or loyal service in relation to foreign and Commonwealth affairs. Dame Judi Dench holds a DBE, Dame of the Order of the British Empire.
Weaponry and guns in this movie include: an Anderson Wheeler double-barreled chambered .500 caliber NE (Nitro Express) hunting rifle, belonging to James Bond's father; Silva's reproduction Percussion Cap Ardesa 1871 Duelling Pistol; Kincade's Colt Model 1878 shotgun; two Steyr M9-A1 pistols; various Heckler & Koch HK416 assault rifles, belonging to Silva's men; Heckler & Koch G36C rifles with G36V carry handles, used by the Metropolitan Police Service's CO19 officers; M4-style carbine assault rifles, used by MI6 security officers; Miss Eve Moneypenny's Olympic Arms K23B rifle; various standard Glock 17 pistols; a one hundred round drum mag semi-automatic Glock 18 machine pistol-class pistol, used by Patrice, who also has a sniper rifle, and a hand recognition Walther PPK/S 9mm short firearm, with a palm-sensitive hammer coded to James Bond's palm prints. For the weapons training, the cast went through two hundred thousand rounds of ammunition.
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Naomie Harris is the fourth actress of Jamaican descent to play a Bond Girl. American Grace Jones was the third in A View to a Kill (1985). Jones was born in Spanish Town, Jamaica, whereas Harris' mother is from Jamaica, Naomie spent some time there as a child. Ian Fleming wrote the James Bond stories at Goldeneye in Jamaica. The first Bond Girl in the official franchise, was Swiss actress Ursula Andress, who was first seen in a white bikini emerging from the tranquil sea waters of Jamaica in Dr. No (1962). Marguerite LeWars was the first in Dr. No (1962). LeWars was the reigning Miss Jamaica, and was cast in the film when the production crew encountered her at Kingston Airport, where she had been an employee there. Martine Beswick is the second Jamaican actress, and the only Jamaican who was cast twice: as the gypsy Zora in From Russia with Love (1963), and as the doomed Paula in Thunderball (1965).
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Some fans suggest that Silva may actually be M's son.
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Daniel Craig's third outing playing James Bond. Craig's first was Casino Royale (2006) and his second was Quantum of Solace (2008). This movie is Daniel Craig's first James Bond movie not to use an original Ian Fleming story for its title, as his first two Bond movies used Fleming titles.
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Adele's title song "Skyfall" is the first James Bond theme to debut in the Top 10 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 Chart, entering at number eight. It's the seventh Bond song to reach the U.S. Top 10, and the thirteenth to reach the U.S. Top 100. It's the first to chart in the U.S. Top 10 in a decade, the last time being Madonna's Die Another Day (2002) song in 2002. Adele's song sold two hundred sixty-one thousand copies in the U.S. in its first three days. The song debuted on the U.K. Singles Chart at number four within just forty-eight hours of release, and then went to number two within a week, tying with the previous record holder, Duran Duran's "A View to a Kill (1985) (Dance into the Fire)" as the highest ever charting Bond song in U.K. singles history. The song sold eighty-four thousand copies in the U.K. in its first two days, and had sold ninety-two thousand copies within a week. The song went to number one on the U.K. iTunes chart within ten hours. On its first day of release worldwide, the song hit the Top 10 on the iTunes charts in twenty-one countries. Of those, it also went to number one in Belgium, Finland, Germany, Greece, Ireland, The Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, and Sweden.
This movie is partly set in Istanbul, Turkey. Turkish producer Ali Akdeniz, who has worked on The World Is Not Enough (1999) and this movie, says that the location of this part of this movie was particularly chosen as an homage to James Bond's connections with Istanbul, once known as "The City of Spies". Ian Fleming once visited Istanbul in June 1955 for an INTERPOL conference, which he was covering on behalf of "The Sunday Times". The event provided a setting, and much background information for his Bond novel of From Russia with Love (1963). For example, Fleming met Nazim Kalkavan, an Oxford educated man who inspired the Darko Kerim character. Also, while there, Fleming covered the "Istanbul Pogroms" (The Great Riot of Istanbul), which was published in "The Sunday Times" on September 11, 1955. When Fleming left the conference, he travelled by train, commenting that the experience was drab because there had been no dining car. Interestingly, this movie and From Russia with Love (1963) involve trains, the London subway tube, and a Turkish train in Adana in this movie, and the Orient Express in From Russia with Love (1963).
After his first conversation with Q, Bond says to himself the phrase, "brave new world", which is a quote from William Shakespeare's play The Tempest (in this case, an observation on Q's youth).
Product placements, brand integrations, and promotional tie-ins include: Heineken Lager beer; Coca Cola's Coke Zero; Bollinger champagne; Visit Britain Tourism's 'Live Like Bond' campaign; "The James Bond Archives" and "SKYFALL: Bond On Set" books; Procter & Gamble fragrance; Virgin Atlantic; Literary Review Magazine; Tom Ford clothing; Cartamundi playing cards; Omega watches, including a 50th Anniversary Seamaster Planet Ocean 600M "SKYFALL" Limited Edition watch; Swarovski Jewellery; Corgi die-cast James Bond Skyfall toy Aston Martin DB5 cars; the London 2012 Olympics; Honda motorcycles; Hornby Scalextric car sets; Jaguar and Land Rover vehicles; Activision's 007 Legends (2012) video game; RT Marketing James Bond 007 merchandising; Sky TV's Sky Movies 007 HD Bond channel and Sony Electronics products, including Bravia televisions, Vaio laptops and computers, and Xperia tablets and smart phones, the Sony Xperia TL phone and Heineken beer, being two of the products making brand cameos in the film. The London "Mirror" newspaper has reported that about twenty-nine million pounds, or about one third of this movie's budget was raised from commercial deals.
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Being that this was the 50th anniversary of the film franchise, there were several homages and references to the old movies. For example, when James Bond gave the scrap metal pieces to an agent, he said "for her eyes only". This was a reference to For Your Eyes Only (1981). The Aston Martin DB5, and the location that M asks Bond how old was he when his parents died, was a reference to Goldfinger (1964). The hand print recognition gun grips were a reference to Licence to Kill (1989). The scene where Bond breaks into M's house is a reference to Casino Royale (2006). The explosion attack on MI6 was a reference to The World Is Not Enough (1999). The mention of Bond's parents was a reference to GoldenEye (1995), and of course, Bond giving his iconic "Bond, James Bond" introduction to a lady while in a casino wearing a tuxedo, and Q giving Bond a Walther PPK was a reference to those iconic moments in the first James Bond movie, Dr. No (1962).
On Hashima Island, Silva's lair, "Boum!" by Charles Trenet can be heard. In the final battle in Scotland when Silva's helicopter arrives, it plays through a loudspeaker a cover of John Lee Hooker's "Boom Boom Boom Boom".
The scene where Bond takes M to his secret garage and his Aston Martin was shot in early December 2011 on a freezing cold night that just also happened to be Dame Judi Dench's 77th birthday. She was presented with a birthday cake in a parking lot at 4 a.m.
Q drinks from a coffee cup showing the letter distribution chart for the popular board game Scrabble.
Albert Finney's last movie role before his retirement the same year this came out. He died on February 7, 2019 at the age of eighty-two.
An anagram of the message Silva sends M before blowing up MI6, "Think on your sins" is "Your son isn't in HK", which could strengthen the idea that Silva is M's son, and that he left his post in Hong Kong.
This movie started shooting in 2011, which was the 30th year that casting director Debbie McWilliams had being working on the franchise. McWilliams' first James Bond movie was For Your Eyes Only (1981). For this movie, McWilliams coordinated casting sessions that took place in various locations all around the world, which included, amongst others, Athens, Greece; Beijing and Shanghai, China; Istanbul, Turkey; London, England; Madrid, Spain; Stockholm, Sweden; and Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Third James Bond movie to film in Japan. Hashima Island was for shooting Silva's island lair. The first Bond movie to lens in Japan, where the largest amount of filming was done, was for You Only Live Twice (1967). The second was for The Spy Who Loved Me (1977), where filming was done there, to get shots of exotic fish in Okinawa.
Producer Michael G. Wilson said on the DVD audio commentary that many people thought that leading Bond Girl Bérénice Marlohe was not in the movie enough.
Ben Whishaw (Q) has more screentime in this movie than John Cleese had in The World Is Not Enough (1999) and Die Another Day (2002) combined.
In the Macau casino scene, Fukutu (Tom So), one of the high stakes gamblers from Casino Royale (2006), can be clearly seen playing billiards in the background.
Raoul Silva was modelled on The Joker from The Dark Knight (2008) and Colonel Hans Landa from Inglourious Basterds (2009).
First James Bond movie in ten years to have a theme song that shared its title with that of the movie.
At one point it was rumored that this movie would be shot in New York City, leading to gossip that it would be based on the Fleming short story "007 in New York". However, it turned out to be false, and it appears that New York City was never under consideration. Other rumors claimed that Israel would be used for several James Bond movies. That turned out to be false as well. A rumor that filming would take place in India was partially true. They were set to film several action scenes there, but then plans were changed, and all location shooting there was cancelled.
Danny Boyle was once erroneously touted in the media as having being asked to direct. One of this movie's main Bond girls, Naomie Harris, appeared in Boyle's 28 Days Later... (2002), which was released in the same year as the last Bond movie with a black Bond girl, Die Another Day (2002). Coincidentally, Boyle ended up directing the James Bond short with Daniel Craig and Queen Elizabeth II which opened the 2012 London Olympics Opening Ceremony, London 2012 Olympic Opening Ceremony: Isles of Wonder (2012).
The literal English translation of some of this movie's foreign language titles have this movie known, in their respective regions, as "Operation Skyfall".
Vehicles featured in this movie include: a Range Rover Vogue SE; a 3.0 L V6 Diesel Jaguar XJ L; a Range Rover Evoque; black 2007 Audi A5 B8 cars; a Mercedes-Benz; a Stornoway metallic grey Land Rover Defender 110 wheelbase double cab utility vehicle; a 320D L Cat Hydraulic Excavator; 1998 Volkswagen Typ 1C Beetles; an Agusta Westland Merlin AW101 helicopter; various Honda CRF 250R motorcycles, and the classic James bond car, the silver birch Aston Martin DB5.
Third consecutive official James Bond movie to be distributed by Sony Pictures, after Casino Royale (2006) and Quantum of Solace (2008). The official April 13, 2011 press release stated: "Sony Pictures and MGM look forward to Sony Pictures co-financing and distributing Spectre (2015) on a similar basis." This is Sony Pictures' widest theatrical release in the U.K. and Ireland, with this movie launching on one thousand five hundred screens.
The Royal World Premiere of this movie was held on Tuesday, October 23, 2012 at the Royal Albert Hall in the presence of His Royal Highness Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall (Camilla Parker-Bowles). At the request of H.R.H. Prince Charles, the Gala Charity Premiere Benefit aided the support of former and current serving members of Britain's three intelligence agencies, GCHQ, the Security Service, and the Secret Intelligence Service. Prince Charles is England's Royal Patron of the Intelligence Services. Also in attendance were director Sam Mendes and cast members Daniel Craig, Javier Bardem, Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris, Bérénice Marlohe, Albert Finney, Ben Whishaw, and Dame Judi Dench. The only previous Bond World Premiere to be held at the Royal Albert Hall was for the franchise's 40th anniversary, where Die Another Day (2002) debuted. The gala premiere raised over £300,000 in aid of the Prince's chosen charities.
Some of the cast have favorites from the film franchise's history. Playing the villain in this movie, Javier Bardem's favorite Bond villain is Jaws from The Spy Who Loved Me (1977) and Moonraker (1979), and Bond Girls Bérénice Marlohe and Naomi Harris say their favorite Bond Girls are Famke Janssen from GoldenEye (1995), and Grace Jones from A View to a Kill (1985), respectively.
The demand for the Wild and Wolf scrabble mug Q was using soared soon after the movie's release, as did the Royal Doulton china bulldog paperweight.
Second time in a James Bond movie that Rory Kinnear played MI6 Chief of Staff Bill Tanner. His first time was in Quantum of Solace (2008). With this movie, Kinnear has played Tanner twice on film and three times in video games, meaning he has portrayed the character more than any other actor.
Second Daniel Craig James Bond movie to feature a casino, and the first for him since Casino Royale (2006). Not every Bond movie has a casino sequence, but this movie joins the ranks in the official series of those that have: Dr. No (1962), Thunderball (1965), On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969), Diamonds Are Forever (1971), The Man with the Golden Gun (1974), For Your Eyes Only (1981), Licence to Kill (1989), GoldenEye (1995), The World Is Not Enough (1999), and Casino Royale (2006). All of the unofficial Bond movies, Casino Royale (1967), Never Say Never Again (1983), and Climax! (1954) season one, episode three, "Casino Royale", have featured a casino. This is the first Bond movie since The Man with the Golden Gun (1974) to feature a casino in Asia. Its name is "The Golden Dragon Casino", and it's a floating casino in Macau, China, and was based on the real-life Macau floating casino, "The Macau Palace".
Naomie Harris is the fourth actress in the official franchise to play Miss Moneypenny. Harris is the sixth, if one counts Pamela Salem from the unofficial Never Say Never Again (1983) and Casino Royale (1967), where, in the latter, the character was technically Miss Moneypenny's daughter. Harris' Moneypenny is called Eve, making her characterization the first time in the official franchise that the character has a first name. This movie is the first time the character has appeared in the franchise since Die Another Day (2002). Harris is also the first black actress to play the part. Lois Maxwell first played Miss Moneypenny in fourteen James Bond movies from 1962 to 1985 through all of the Sir Sean Connery, George Lazenby, and Sir Roger Moore movies. Maxwell was followed by Caroline Bliss for two movies during the Timothy Dalton era, and then Samantha Bond for four movies during the Pierce Brosnan era. This movie represents the first time that Miss Eve Moneypenny is a fully-fledged main Bond Girl and not a supporting character.
When James Bond uses his father Andrew's rifle, an "AB" can be seen engraved on it. These are also the initials of classical Bond producer Albert R. Broccoli, but this is purely a coincidence.
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First James Bond movie to feature MGM's new 2012 logo. The first James Bond movie to be released with the MGM lion logo at the beginning was Octopussy (1983). MGM merged with United Artists in 1982, the year before the release of that movie, which was the first Bond movie distributed by the then new company, MGM/UA Distribution Company.
The name of the boat on which James Bond (Daniel Craig) and Sévérine (Bérénice Marlohe) journey is called "The Chimera", which is from Greek mythology, and is what co-inspired the Sévérine character. The vessel is, in real life, called the "SY Regina", and is also known as the "Medyat Regina".
First James Bond movie to film in China and Japan since You Only Live Twice (1967). Timothy Dalton's planned third Bond movie, "Property of a Lady", would have gone to these locations, as well as Scotland.
This movie featured the expression "For her eyes only", which is a variation on the earlier James Bond short story, compilation novel title, and movie title of For Your Eyes Only (1981). These were a variation on the real-life espionage term "Eyes Only", meaning restricted viewing to certain personnel. "The Free Dictionary" website defines "Eyes Only" as meaning "meant to be seen only by the addressee; confidential" and "official classification for documents; meant to be seen by only the person to whom it is directed."
The DLC in the videogame 007 Legends (2012) is based on the Istanbul chase, and killing Patrice from Skyfall. Both of the cut scenes are (save for playing as Bond, as it is a first person shooter) exactly as in the movie, except for the graphics in the game. This was to promote the movie, as the DLC trailer was released alongside the movie.
Stuntwoman Tina Maskell is credited twice as a stunt performer in the credits.
Director Sam Mendes has stated that he originally planned to open this movie with the James Bond gun barrel sequence, but realized it would have conflicted with the shot of Bond walking into focus in the first scene. (In a case of making lemonade from lemons. Placing it at the end allowed this movie to pay tribute to the 50th Anniversary of the franchise).
M writing James Bond's obituary after he's presumed dead is from the novel "You Only Live Twice".
Included amongst the "1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die", edited by Steven Schneider.
The chopper seen at the end of this movie is an AgustaWestland Merlin AW101 helicopter. An AgustaWestland Merlin AW139 helicopter was seen in the opening "Happy and Glorious" sequence of the 2012 London Olympics where Stuntmen Mark Sutton and Gary Connery took a skyfall jump in the guise of being James Bond and Queen Elizabeth II, respectively.
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Javier Bardem, who won an Oscar for Best Actor in a Supporting Role for No Country for Old Men (2007), is the second Oscar-winning actor to play a Bond villain. The first being Christopher Walken in A View to a Kill (1985), for his role in The Deer Hunter (1978).
The Aston Martin in this movie, while having many of the gadgets of the original, is not identical. Specifically, the original had a noticeable panel in the roof for the ejection seat. The one in this movie has a smooth roof without the panel.
The stags depicted at the entrance to the Skyfall estate were inspired by the pair at Duntrune Castle in Argyll.
With perennial Academy Award nominee Roger Deakins as director of photography, this is the first James Bond movie to receive an Oscar nomination for Best Cinematography.
In Dr. No (1962), Q (Peter Burton) takes James Bond's (Sir Sean Connery's) Beretta M418 and refers to it as a "ladies' gun". Sévérine (Bérénice Marlohe) is yet another woman in the Bond film franchise to be identified as carrying one.
M's office at the end of the movie is a re-creation of the original office from the earlier James Bond movies. However, the ship painting that had been above the fireplace behind the desk was now between the windows, and a picture of the new MI6 building hangs in its place.
This movie contains references to previous James Bond movies, such as Goldfinger (1964), For Your Eyes Only (1981), Licence to Kill (1989), and GoldenEye (1995). Goldfinger (1964): As Bond opens the top of the gear shift of his Aston Martin DB5, revealing the ejector-seat button. For Your Eyes Only (1981): Spoken by Bond, but slightly changed to "For her eyes only". Licence to Kill (1989): James Bond's weapon is a signature gun with palmprint recognition. Like the rifle in Licence to Kill (1989). GoldenEye (1995): When Q explains to Bond that the Q-department doesn't make exploding pens anymore.
Tiago Rodriguez, a.k.a. Raoul Silva reads James Bond's psychological profile, which mentions Bond's unresolved childhood trauma. This refers to the loss of his parents in a climbing accident when he was eight. This was explored in greater detail in the subsequent Bond movie, Spectre (2015).
Since Daniel Craig was first cast as James Bond, he has often had the nickname of "James Blond", due to his lighter color hair, which is markedly different than Bond's usual dark hair. As Javier Bardem sports blond hair in this movie, this becomes the first movie entry in the official franchise to feature Bond and the leading villain with blond hair. Other blond Bond villains include Red Grant in From Russia with Love (1963), Hans in You Only Live Twice (1967), Erich Kriegler in For Your Eyes Only (1981), Venz in A View to a Kill (1985), Necros in The Living Daylights (1987), Peter Franks in Diamonds Are Forever (1971), Stamper in Tomorrow Never Dies (1997), and Goldie in The World Is Not Enough (1999). However, in the official franchise, Bardem is only the second main Bond villain to have blond hair after Christopher Walken as Max Zorin in A View to a Kill (1985). Bardem is the third if one counts Gert Fröbe as the red-blond haired Auric Goldfinger (1964) or the fourth if one counts Klaus Maria Brandauer as Maximillian Largo in the unofficial Never Say Never Again (1983). Bardem's blond hair in this movie was not peroxided, but was a wig. This movie's release also marks twenty-five years since there has been a leading blonde Bond Girl, who was Kara Milovy (Maryam d'Abo) in The Living Daylights (1987). Since then, the only significant blonde Bond Girl was the supporting role of Professor Inga Bergstrom (Cecilie Thomsen) in Tomorrow Never Dies (1997).
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The opening train action sequence was originally planned to be shot in the Sabarmati railway yard of the Konkan Railway in India. However, delays in getting permission to film there, with the many complex problems, meant that it wasn't. South Africa was considered for this sequence, but in the end, it was shot in Turkey.
One of just a few James Bond movies to feature a British country house or manor house. Others include The Blayden safe house in The Living Daylights (1987); Shrublands in Thunderball (1965) and Never Say Never Again (1983); and M's house "Quarterdeck" in On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969).
Patrice's (Ola Rapace's) gun is a one-hundred-round drum magazine semi-automatic Glock 18 machine pistol-class firearm, which fires twenty rounds per second. The firearm has an effective range of fifty meters (fifty-five yards) and a muzzle velocity of one thousand two hundred thirty feet per second (three hundred seventy-five meters per second). It's an Austrian gun that was developed at the request of EKO Cobra, the Austrian counterterrorist unit.
Second James Bond movie to feature an attack on MI6 Headquarters in London. The first was in The World Is Not Enough (1999). Similarly, a raid on MI6's countryside Blayden safe house was seen in The Living Daylights (1987).
It has been claimed that this movie has used Great Britain, and specifically London for filming locations more than any other James Bond movie in the franchise's history. Several different locations in London were used as interiors and exteriors, some of which would not normally be accessible for filming. London locations included Vauxhall Bridge; Millbank; The Old Vic Tunnels; an underground car park on Great Suffolk Street; Trinity Square; the entrance to Broadgate Tower; The Virgin Active Pool in Canary Wharf; Cadogan Square, The National Portrait Gallery; Parliament Square; Tower Hill; the building roof of the Department for Energy & Climate Change; the Smithfield Meat Market; St. Bartholomew's Hospital; Charing Cross Underground Station; Greenwich's Old Royal Naval College; Southwark; Whitehall; and London's landmark Trafalgar Square.
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James Bond used the Walther PPK and the Walther PPK/S in this movie.
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Bérénice Marlohe has said that her characterization of Bond Girl Sévérine was inspired by two things: "The Chimera" from mythology and Famke Janssen's Xenia Onatopp Bond Girl character from GoldenEye (1995). This movie is the first English-speaking role for Marlohe, who is the sixth to play a leading Bond Girl, the others being Claudine Auger (Thunderball (1965)), Corinne Cléry (Moonraker (1979)), Carole Bouquet (For Your Eyes Only (1981)), Sophie Marceau (The World Is Not Enough (1999)), and Eva Green in Casino Royale (2006). Prior to this movie, Marlohe once appeared on a show wearing just a red wig, and nothing else. Reportedly, Marlohe didn't have an agent prior to this movie, got the part on her own, and was cast quite late. Marlohe was born in Paris on May 19, 1979, which was just a few months after Moonraker (1979) had finished filming there.
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This is the third James Bond movie with an Asian shooting location, and an actress of Asian descent playing one of the main Bond Girls. The first two were You Only Live Twice (1967) and Tomorrow Never Dies (1997). This movie's Bond Girl Bérénice Marlohe was born to a Cambodian/Chinese father and a French mother (making her half-white and half-Asian). A few Bond movies, which shot in Asia, did not feature a main Bond Girl who was descended from there, these were Die Another Day (2002), Octopussy (1983), and The Man with the Golden Gun (1974). However, these three movies did cast women of Asian descent in minor Bond Girl roles.
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Tenth James Bond movie produced by Michael G. Wilson as a regular (non-executive) producer. The next James Bond movie (Spectre (2015)) was expected to be released in 2014, that year marked Wilson's 50th Golden Anniversary Year of his association with the James Bond official franchise. Wilson first appeared as an uncredited extra as a soldier at Fort Knox in Goldfinger (1964). Similarly, this movie was released in the Golden 50th Anniversary Year of the franchise in 2012. Wilson has also worked on the movies as a screenwriter, and as a legal, administrative, and technical consultant, and is also known for making regular cameo appearances in the franchise.
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The movie's explosive finale at the James Bond homestead, "Skyfall", has often been likened by the public and production personnel, including director Sam Mendes, to the booby-trapped obstacle climax of Home Alone (1990). Two sound department crew, Dino Dimuro and David Young, worked on both movies.
The second time that James Bond is crying. In On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969), he cried when his bride Tracy (Dame Diana Rigg) was killed in a drive-by shooting by Ernst Stavro Blofeld (Telly Savalas) and Irma Bunt (Ilse Steppat).
Javier Bardem wore a blond wig for the role, after brainstorming ideas with director Sam Mendes to come up with a distinctive visual look for the character, which led some commentators to observe a similarity between the character and WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.
During the opening titles, several daggers plunge into a graveyard. One of the daggers is a Fairbairn-Sykes fighting knife, issued to British Special Forces from World War II to the present day, as of 2013.
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Second James Bond movie edited by Stuart Baird, after Casino Royale (2006). Also, the second Bond movie for production designer Dennis Gassner, whose first was Quantum of Solace (2008). Third Bond movie as stunt coordinator for Gary Powell, who worked in other stunt positions on four other Bond movies, beginning with GoldenEye (1995). Also, the seventh Bond movie as special effects supervisor for Chris Corbould, whose tally totals thirteen Bond movies, starting with The Spy Who Loved Me (1977).
Albert Finney said he remembers seeing the first James Bond movie, Dr. No (1962). Other cast members were working actors and actresses in film and television when Dr. No (1962) was in theaters. Dame Judi Dench (M) was appearing as Anya in Anton Chekhov's The Cherry Orchard (1962), while Finney's closest movie role to the release date of Dr. No (1962) was as another great lover, Tom Jones (1963), in which he starred with Diane Cilento, who was once married to cinema's first James Bond, Sir Sean Connery, who was actually the original choice to play the Kincade character. Producer Barbara Broccoli has said that her father, pioneer Bond producer Albert R. Broccoli, had been keen to work with Finney, but the opportunity never arose.
Released late 2012, this movie played in theaters in early 2013, which marked the 30th anniversary that producer Barbara Broccoli had officially been associated with the franchise, first officially credited as an executive assistant on Octopussy (1983). Broccoli's first start in the franchise, however, was as an uncredited second assistant director on Moonraker (1979), a 30th anniversary milestone for this was in 2009, after the release of Quantum of Solace (2008). 2012 also marks the 25th anniversary year for Broccoli as a producer in the franchise, as her first credit as a producer was as an associate producer on The Living Daylights (1987). It is also the 25th anniversary year for executive producer and production manager Callum McDougall, who started as an assistant director on the same James Bond movie.
The chase through Istanbul, Turkey was originally planned for The World Is Not Enough (1999).
In the art gallery, Bond and Q sit in front of a Joseph Wright painting called "An Experiment on a Bird in the Air Pump", which is well-known for its use on the cover of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley's "Frankenstein".
James Bond's line to Miss Eve Moneypenny, "Don't touch your ear", is the second time he has instructed a fellow operative to not give away his or her mission, the first time being in Casino Royale (2006), in the opening chase sequence that went awry, when the operative did just that, alerting their prey to their presence.
While clearly associated with Hashima Island, virtually none of what is shown corresponds to videos or to the many available photos of the actual place, nor with the Google satellite image. This indicates a combination of CGI and studio work, in addition to on-site filming.
Javier Bardem appears exactly one hour and ten minutes into this movie.
The only non-Best Picture Oscar nominee that year to be nominated for Best Sound Editing (which it won in a tie), and Best Sound Mixing.
James Bond spends roughly one third of this movie unshaven, uncommon for the character. He finally shaves (or is shaved) around the fifty-three-minute mark.
The only gun not sold from James Bond's family collection was his father's hunting rifle, a double barrel shotgun with the initials "AB" inscribed on the stock. Bond's late father's name was Andrew. The initials, coincidentally, are the same as Albert R. Broccoli, who produced every official James Bond movie from Dr. No (1962) through GoldenEye (1995) before his death in 1996.
After years of holding it off, the Metropolitan Police were beginning to finally phase out their traditional stripe livery during the making of this movie and were replacing it with the national high visibility Police livery ("battenburg") - which most U.K. Police forces had adopted since the early 2000s. As a result, this is probably the last major movie to prominently feature the distinctive vehicle markings (albeit a few in the new design are also featured).
This movie is riddled with product placements for airlines, soft drinks, watches, and cigarettes (including the Marlboro theme song, which was immediately preceded with a shot of a Marlboro billboard), via prominently placed logos, billboards, et cetera.
The word "Sévérine" is a French name of Latin origin from French, and translates into English as meaning "stern". It is a French feminine variation of the Latin male name "Severus" which is a Saint's name. Sévérine is made up of eight letters, has three syllables and is pronounced "Sey-Vah-RIY-N". Sévérine is variant of the name "Severina", used in Italian, German, Portugese, Romanian, and Slavic. Other variant forms of the name are Severino, Severinus, Severo, Sevrin, and Seweryn.
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Silva's helicopter attacking the Skyfall estate bears an orange-red logo, that looks just like the logo of the Austrian Air Force, though the movie leaves it open whether this is a hint at any of Silva's connections or not.
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When James Bond meets Q for the first time in the National Gallery, they stare at J.M.W. Turner's "The Fighting Temeraire", and as they stare at the painting, Q's first remark to Bond is "What do you see?" This line was also the opening of "Red", screenwriter John Logan's Tony Award-winning play, which is about modern artist Mark Rothko.
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While some James Bond movies have original titles that do not come from the work of Ian Fleming, "Skyfall" is the first original title that has already existed as the title of other fictional works. "Skyfall" is also the title of a 1966 science fiction novel by Harry Harrison, a 1987 novel by Thomas Block, a 2004 novel in the "Saga of the Skolian Empire" science fiction series by Catherine Asaro, a 2007 novel by Anthony Eaton in the fantasy action "Darklands Trilogy", and also the name of a Norweigan movie, Falling Sky (2002), its literal English translation being, "Falling Sky", or "The Sky Is Falling Down".
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This marks the 10th anniversary of Gregg Wilson in the James Bond film franchise. The movie marks the milestone of Gregg being the first third-generation member of the Broccoli and Wilson family to achieve a senior producer credit in the franchise, that of an associate producer. Gregg is the son of Michael G. Wilson, who is the stepson of co-founding producer Albert R. Broccoli. Gregg's first credit in the franchise was as a development executive on Die Another Day (2002). Gregg was also an assistant producer on Quantum of Solace (2008).
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Bérénice Marlohe said that she based her inspiration on her Sévérine character on "The Chimera", which is from Greek mythology. Also known as "The Chimaera", Wikipedia defines The Chimera as a "she-goat, a monstrous fire-breathing female creature of Lycia in Asia Minor, composed of the parts of three animals: a lion, a serpent, and a goat. Usually depicted as a lion, with the head of a goat arising from its back, and a tail that ended in a snake's head, the Chimera was one of the offspring of Typhon and Echidna, and a sibling of such monsters as Cerberus and the Lernaean Hydra. The term "chimera" has also come to describe any mythical or fictional animal with parts taken from various animals." Marlohe has said "I wanted to have that dangerousness spreading through her, but at the same time, I wanted to create a real human being with a range of emotions, and the inner struggles we go through as human beings." Also, the name of the boat, on which Bond and Sévérine journey, is called "The Chimera".
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The production shoot for this movie went for one hundred twenty-seven days, while the movie featured one hundred seventy-two scenes.
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The seventh theatrical movie collaboration of cinematographer Roger Deakins and production designer Dennis Gassner. The two had worked with director Sam Mendes before on Jarhead (2005). The pair's other collaborations were all on movies for Joel and Ethan Coen, they being Barton Fink (1991), The Ladykillers (2004), The Hudsucker Proxy (1994), The Man Who Wasn't There (2001), and O Brother, Where Art Thou? (2000).
Principal photography was scheduled to take up one hundred thirty-three days, although the actual filming only took one hundred twenty-eight.
Shooting of the finale was planned to take place at Duntrune Castle in Argyll, but was cancelled shortly after filming began. Glencoe was instead chosen for filming of these scenes.
The second James Bond movie to have the gun barrel sequence at the beginning of the end credits. This is Daniel Craig's third different gun barrel sequence, making him the first James Bond actor to do more than two different ones, like Sir Sean Connery and Sir Roger Moore.
Ben Whishaw and Daniel Craig appeared in Spectre (2015), The Trench (1999), Layer Cake (2004), Enduring Love (2004), and No Time to Die (2020).
In 2012, media reports stated that Jessica Gomes and Nicole Trunfio auditioned for the role of Sévérine.
Naomie Harris (Miss Eve Moneypenny) became the sixth major actor or actress who has appeared in movies based on works of John le Carré and Ian Fleming, both famous spy novelists. Harris' role as Gail Perkins in Our Kind of Traitor (2016) follows her two previous appearances in Bond movies, in this movie and Spectre (2015). Pierce Brosnan and Sir Sean Connery previously portrayed James Bond on-screen, and have starred in le Carré filmed adaptations, they being The Tailor of Panama (2001) and The Russia House (1990), respectively, the latter which has a title that evokes Fleming's From Russia with Love (1963), which starred Connery as Bond. Of Connery's 007 Bond movies, his one unofficial Bond movie, Never Say Never Again (1983), co-starred Klaus Maria Brandauer, who also appeared in The Russia House (1990). Alas, Connery and Brandauer have starred in the same two Bond and le Carré spy movies. Also, Harris and Brosnan appeared in After the Sunset (2004). The first actor to portray M in the Bond movies, Bernard Lee, was the first actor to do both Bond and le Carré. Lee appeared as Patmore in le Carré's The Spy Who Came in from the Cold (1965), which was the first filmed adaptation of a le Carré novel. Le Carré's The Constant Gardener (2005) starred Ralph Fiennes, who played Justin Quayle, and has portrayed M (Gareth Mallory) in this movie, Spectre (2015) and No Time to Die (2020), as has Harris played Miss Eve Moneypenny in the three. Rachel Weisz, the wife of James Bond actor Daniel Craig, previously starred as Tessa Quayle in The Constant Gardener (2005), for which she won a Best Actress in a Supporting Role Academy Award, with Wiesz and Fiennes playing husband and wife in that movie. About thirty cast and crew personnel worked on Spectre (2015) and John le Carré's Our Kind of Traitor (2016).
Nicholas Woodeson, who portrayed Doctor Hall (the man who gives James Bond the word association test), also appeared in The Avengers (1998) as Dr. Darling, who tests Ralph Fiennes' character - British Agent John Steed - near the beginning of the movie. In that movie, John Steed faces off against the villainous Sir August de Wynter, played by Sir Sean Connery.
In this movie, you see Bond using a shaving brush and a straight razor. This in contrast to Live and Let Die (1973) where he used an aeresol can of shave foam and a safety razor.
With the announcement in 2019 that No Time to Die (2020) will be filming scenes in Matera, Italy, this becomes the only Daniel Craig James Bond movie not to have any scenes set or shot in Italy.
Miss Eve Moneypenny says there is more to Gareth Mallory "than meets the eye". This is the tagline of the "Transformers" franchise, about a group of shape-shifting robots. Many of the Transformers' names bear the name of "Skyfall".
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During this movie's development and early stages of pre-production, "Variety" columnist Liz Smith once wrote about this movie, then known as "Bond 23", being filmed in New York City, using its Primola Restaurant as one of its locations. Published on Wednesday, September 10, 2008, the piece read: "WHO WAS that blond stunner who froze forks mid-air at the posh Primola eatery in N.Y.? Oh yes indeed, it was Daniel Craig, 007 himself. The studly Daniel was accompanied by his producer Barbara Broccoli. Daniel and Barbara talked about the next Bond epic, part of which will be filmed, for the very first time!, in New York City. Primola itself will have a little cameo. Maybe Daniel just wanted to see if the restaurant could handle those shoulders of his." It turned out that New York City was never actually under consideration as a filming location.
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This is the only movie to star Daniel Craig as James Bond that does not feature Jesper Christensen as Mr. White, or reference Vesper Lynd or the QUANTUM organization.
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Olga Kurylenko was falsely rumored to return as Camille Montes from Quantum of Solace (2008).
Thomas Newman replaced David Arnold as the composer for this movie. After Monty Norman, John Barry, George Martin, Marvin Hamlisch, Bill Conti, Michael Kamen, Éric Serra, and Arnold, Newman is the ninth composer on a James Bond movie.
James Bond stands at a window at Skyfall while in a conversation with M while they wait for the attack in a stance mimicking that of the Terminator at the gas station in Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991).
James Bond's first kill doesn't happen until roughly fifty minutes into this movie, and one could argue that as Patrice's hand slips, it doesn't count as an intentional kill. This technicality aside, M had ordered Bond to kill Patrice after interrogating him, so the kill is inevitable, if premature.
The roof of the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul was also used for the foot chase in The International (2009).
Drax's minions drive the same yellow Mini-Mokes as on the supertanker in The Spy Who Loved Me (1977).
Dame Judi Dench and Ben Whishaw co-starred in the stage play "Peter and Alice" written by Skyfall (2012) screenwriter John Logan in 2013.
With this movie and Spectre (2015), Ralph Fiennes became the seventh major actor or actress who has appeared in the "James Bond" and "The Avengers" universes, the latter being the English spy one, and not the comic superheroes one. From the original television series The Avengers (1961), three cast members appeared in Bond movies: Honor Blackman played Pussy Galore in Goldfinger (1964), Patrick Macnee portrayed Sir Godfrey Tibbett in A View to a Kill (1985), and Dame Diana Rigg played Tracy Di Vicenzo in On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969). The latter movie also featured as "The English Girl", Joanna Lumley, who appeared in The New Avengers (1976) which also starred Macnee. While Nadim Sawalha appeared in The Avengers (1998), as well as two Bond movies: The Living Daylights (1987) and The Spy Who Loved Me (1977). Fiennes appeared in The Avengers (1998) co-starring former James Bond Sir Sean Connery, who played the villain Sir August de Wynter. Of these seven actors and actresses, Fiennes and Macnee have portrayed The Avengers' character of John Steed, in the theatrical movie and television series, respectively, with the latter also voicing the Invisible Jones character in The Avengers (1998). In that movie, John Steed (Ralph Fiennes) and Emma Peel (Uma Thurman) get across the frozen river by "walking" on the surface inside inflatable plastic bubbles, which is similar to how James Bond got aboard Ernst Stavro Blofeld's (Charles Gray's) oil rig in Diamonds Are Forever (1971).
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For The Brothers Grimsby (2016): Penélope Cruz portrayed that spy spoof movie's archvillain, Rhonda George. Cruz's husband, Javier Bardem, played the archvillain in this movie. Also, the villain's scheme in The Brothers Grimsby (2016) is similar to Drax's (Michael Lonsdale's) in Moonraker (1979).
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First James Bond movie since Tomorrow Never Dies (1997) to have someone other than a Bond Girl to receive second billing, in this case, Dame Judi Dench as "M".
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In this movie, James Bond's ancestors are hinted at being Recusant Catholics; Catholics who hid their faith when it was illegal in England. In Elizabeth (1998), Daniel Craig played a Catholic Priest sent by Rome to England to either kill or do harm to Queen Elizabeth (Cate Blanchett) or undermine her attempt to form the Church of England. He is ultimately discovered hiding in the secret room of a house (similar purpose to the Priest's hole in this movie) by Walsingham (Geoffrey Rush), arrested, and tortured.
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Huw Edwards: The real-life BBC news reader as a BBC News anchor reading the news.
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Michael G. Wilson: Producer Michael G. Wilson has been doing regular cameos in the official James Bond franchise since The Spy Who Loved Me (1977), with his first being in Goldfinger (1964). Wilson's cameo appearance in this movie was mostly cut out, but there is one shot of him still in the movie. The sequence that got cut, was a funeral procession of hearses, Wilson's cameo was as a pall bearer. Wilson is still seen in the movie at a distance through a doorway, during the sequence where Dame Judi Dench is standing next to the MI6 coffins covered with Union Jack flags.
Wolf Blitzer: The real-life CNN newscaster as a CNN News anchor reporting on the MI6 agency.
Nicky Hayden: Uncredited, the professional motorcycle racer as a motorcycle rider during the opening chase sequence.
Gregg Wilson: Uncredited, the associate producer as a bar patron in the Turkish bar.
First James Bond movie in which the villain is successful in completing his primary objective (the death of M).
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This is the first time that two people playing the character of M, in this case, Dame Judi Dench and M successor Ralph Fiennes, have shared the screen in the same scenes.
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First James Bond movie where the franchise traditional Bond car, an Aston Martin DB5, is blown up.
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In three consecutive James Bond movies, Casino Royale (2006), Quantum of Solace (2008), and this movie, every featured girl with whom Bond sleeps, or fools around, winds up dying. This includes: Solange, Vesper Lynd, Agent Strawberry Fields, and Sévérine. He doesn't sleep with Camille Montes or Miss Eve Moneypenny (though a liaison with the latter was strongly suggested, happening off-screen if so) and they both lived.
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First Daniel Craig James Bond movie where Bond kills the lead villain. The main villains in Casino Royale (2006) and Quantum of Solace (2008) were killed by their own people.
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When Bond tracks Patrice to Shanghai, Patrice assassinates a man (identified in the credits as "Shanghai Art Collector") while he is viewing a painting. The painting is "Woman with a Fan (Luna Czechowska)", painted by Amedeo Modigliani in 1919. On May 20, 2010, this painting was stolen from the Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, along with works by Henri Matisse, Georges Braque, Pablo Picasso, and Fernand Léger. The paintings are still missing, and their collective worth has been estimated at two hundred million dollars.
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In October 2012 controversy broke out in the media and the web about this movie's homoerotic overtones from Raoul Silva directed towards James Bond, Bond traditionally being a devout heterosexual ladies' man. The furor suggests that Silva may be the first ever male Bond "Girl", and that James Bond may actually be bisexual. However, it's not the first time that a male Bond villain has been suggested to be gay, as the Mr. Wint and Mr. Kidd characters in Diamonds Are Forever (1971) were camp henchmen. This is the second time in three Daniel Craig movies that his James Bond has been tied to a chair and tormented by the main villain. In Casino Royale (2006), Bond had his testicles beaten by Le Chiffre (Mads Mikkelsen) with a knotted rope. Here, Bond's chest is caressed by Raoul Silva, then both his legs are then groped with two hands by Silva. There is an out-of-shot inference that Bond's testicles were fondled between shots, making the scene controversial in a similar way to the scene in Casino Royale (2006).
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For the destruction of the Aston Martin DB5, the production crew did not rely on the real car. Instead, the model shop turned to a German company that created parts of the car utilizing vintage 3-D printer technology. The built model was at a 1:3 scale, and then destroyed in front of the cameras.
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M's death is foreshadowed in the opening credits. Dame Judi Dench's credit is displayed over a graveyard.
Bond crying when M dies from her wound has a message behind it: "No matter how many people wanted him dead, or how many people told her he'd gone rogue. She always believed in him."
The first James Bond movie where M (or any top-ranking MI6 official) dies on-screen.
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This movie was largely shot in order so Dame Judi Dench's final scenes to be filmed were M's demise.
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In a 2014 interview with Radio Times magazine, Dame Judi Dench revealed that she cried when producers told her that her M character would die at the end of this movie. During the interview, she also revealed that her late husband, Michael Williams, encouraged her to sign up for the Bond movies. "He wanted to live with a Bond woman", Dench said.
Sévérine (Bérénice Marlohe) is the eighth Bond Girl in the official franchise to be killed by the main Bond villain, after falling for the charms of James Bond and then failing or betraying the villain. Often one of the two Bond Girls is a sacrificial lamb story element anyway (they're just "another girl who'll die") and end up dead, but not all of them are always killed by the villain, but some are. In this movie, Sévérine is tortured then shot by Raoul Silva (Javier Bardem). Sévérine's predecessors include Jill Masterton (Shirley Eaton), painted entirely in gold by Oddjob and/or Goldfinger suffocating her skin in Goldfinger (1964); Helga Brandt (Karin Dor), fed to piranhas by Blofeld in You Only Live Twice (1967); Rosie Carver (Gloria Hendry), shot by a gun in a scarecrow of Mr. Big (Dr. Kananga) in Live and Let Die (1973); Andrea Anders (Maud Adams), shot by Scaramanga in The Man with the Golden Gun (1974); Corinne Dufour (Corinne Cléry), mauled to death by Drax's Doberman dogs after Drax terminates her employment in Moonraker (1979); Paris Carver (Teri Hatcher), shot by Elliot Carver's assassin Dr. Kaufman in Tomorrow Never Dies (1997); and Solange (Caterina Murino), tortured, murdered, and wrapped in a hammock by Le Chiffre's henchmen in Casino Royale (2006). Those who have survived betraying the villain include Domino (Claudine Auger) in Thunderball (1965), Solitaire (Jane Seymour) in Live and Let Die (1973), and Lupe Lamora (Talisa Soto) in Licence to Kill (1989).
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Villains in the James Bond film franchise have often had some physiological dysfunction or trait that makes them distinguishable. For this movie, Raoul Silva (Javier Bardem) has a false jaw. This was caused by his attempted suicide when a hydrogen cyanide capsule implant, in his back left molar, was broken open and left his lower jawbone physically scarred. Interestingly, Jaws (Richard Kiel) from The Spy Who Loved Me (1977) and Moonraker (1979), another villain with a false jaw, is Bardem's favorite Bond villain. Similarly, Sévérine (Bérénice Marlohe), who is initially represented as an antagonistic femme fatale working with Silva, has the distinguishing feature of the tattoo on her wrist. However, as her true character is explored, it is discovered the tattoo meant she belonged to the sex trade of Macau.
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Although this movie did not feature Mr. White, nor the QUANTUM organization. Mr. White returned in Spectre (2015), and it is also revealed in the following movie, that Raoul Silva and Mr. White were members of the S.P.E.C.T.R.E. organization.
M is shot by a nameless henchman around the one hour and fifty-seven minute mark and dies from her wound roughly seventeen minutes later around two hours and fourteen minutes. As he never manages to personally harm her, and is killed by James Bond before seeing her die, Raoul Silva is both successful and unsuccessful in his revenge.
According to Ian Fleming, a 00 Agent faces forced retirement from field work at the age of 45, at which time his 00 status is rescinded and he is assigned to duties at MI6 Headquarters. In this movie, James Bond is unable to pass the qualifications due to his physical condition, and should have been retired to desk duty. At the time this movie came out, Daniel Craig was 44 years old.
Ralph Fiennes is the fourth actor or actress to play "M" in the official franchise. Fiennes' character Gareth Mallory, becomes M at the end of this movie. Bernard Lee was the first actor to play M from 1962 to 1979 through the Sir Sean Connery, George Lazenby and some Sir Roger Moore movies. Robert Brown then played M for four movies for the rest of Moore's movies, and the Dalton movies. Dame Judi Dench played M from 1995 to 2012, with her last main appearance being in this movie (though she returns for a small cameo in the following movie Spectre (2015)). Fiennes' M is the sixth actor or actress to play the character, if one counts the unofficial Bond movies, where John Huston and Edward Fox played M in Casino Royale (1967) and Never Say Never Again (1983) respectively.
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Layer Cake (2004) actor Ben Whishaw (Q), James Bond's (Daniel Craig's) gadget man, was also the one to take him out at the end scene in Layer Cake (2004).
The influence of three of Ian Fleming's novels can be seen in this movie: the early sequences of James Bond "missing or presumed dead" are reminiscent of the end of "You Only Live Twice", wherein Bond is suffering from amnesia, and is "missing or presumed dead", and M writes the obituary for the London Times. When he returns to London, the evaluation he goes through, is similar to the tests he goes through at the start of "The Man With the Golden Gun" upon returning from Japan and Russia, and the emotional ending is reminiscent of the end of "On Her Majesty's Secret Service", where Bond mourns the loss of his wife in his arms.
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Raoul Silva (Javier Bardem) says he worked for MI6 in Hong Kong from 1986 to 1997, long before James Bond (Daniel Craig) - who reached "00" status in 2006 - would've been active. Bardem, born in 1969, is one year younger than Craig. Assuming he is the same age as the actor playing him, that means that Silva (then Tiago Rodriguez) was recruited at seventeen, the legal age of adulthood in Britain. Eleven years later, at the age of twenty-eight, he was found to have hacked the Chinese without authorization, and was handed over to the Chinese government by his section chief, Olivia Mansfield (now "M"). His revenge took him a further fifteen years to enact.
There are two henchpeople in this movie played by Swedes: Ola Rapace played Patrice, and Jens Hultén played Silva's henchman, who James Bond drowned in the lake in the last part of the movie. If only Dolph Lundgren's character as Venz in A View to a Kill (1985) is credited, then this is the second Bond movie which utilized Swedes to play the henchpeople roles. Jens Hultén then got a more substantial role in the other spy film franchise, Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation (2015) as Janik Vinter, released in the same year as another Bond movie, Spectre (2015). In this movie and Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation (2015), Hulten's characters ended up dead.
The shoulder number on Silva's fake police uniform is 101, which is the non-emergency public contact telephone number for London's Metropolitan Police Force.
This movie marks the second movie in which a character played by Javier Bardem used cyanide pills. Raoul Silva breaks a tooth containing hydrogen cyanide after being held and tortured for several months, in an attempt to commit suicide. Rather than killing him though, the cyanide disfigures him. However, in The Sea Inside (2004), Bardem's character, Ramon Sampedro, a quadriplegic, is administered a potassium cyanide solution by his friend, allowing him to die after fighting for two decades for his right to assisted suicide. His suicide is successful.
Raoul Silva (Javier Bardem) is the second main Bond villain to die from a knife on the back, after Aristotle Kristatos in For Your Eyes Only (1981).
Daniel Craig's first James Bond movie, Casino Royale (2006), is a full reboot of the 007 character, wherein Bond is shown scoring his first two official career kills, qualifying him for "Double-0" status. In that movie, he killed a total of eleven. In Quantum of Solace (2008), he killed seventeen. In this movie, not counting ally kills or deaths for which he's indirectly responsible, Bond actively/directly causes at least eighteen definite intentional deaths. His first kill (Patrice) doesn't come until roughly fifty minutes in. As the Daniel Craig movies restarted the timeline, negating all death tolls from former Bonds in previous movies, this iteration of the character has a career total of forty-six total kills so far.
Star Trek Into Darkness (2013) bore a similar plot and similarities to this movie. In that movie, James T. Kirk (Chris Pine) is reinstated as the Captain of the Enterprise and is sent on mission to eliminate rogue Starfleet operative John Harrison (Benedict Cumberbatch) who attacked Federation Headquarters in San Francisco, and is responsible for the bombing of the Starfleet archives in London, where Starfleet officers were killed. When Harrison is captured, he reveals to Kirk and Spock (Zachary Quinto) his real name, which is Khan, and that he has score to settle with Admiral Marcus (Peter Weller) who authorized Kirk to hunt him. When Harrison/Khan attacks Federation Headquarters, Kirk cries when Captain Christopher Pike (Bruce Greenwood) is killed. Pike is Kirk's mentor and father figure. Kirk's father is deceased.