James Bond star Daniel Craig certainly keeps us on our toes. In one interview, he says he’ll continue playing the iconic role as long as he’s able; in the next, he suggests he wants out immediately.
The interview Craig just gave to Time Out London belongs firmly in the latter category, with the soon-to-be four-time 007 declaring, “Now? I’d rather break this glass and slash my wrists [than shoot another Bond]…
“I’m over it at the moment. We’re done. All I want to do is move on.”
This would seem like a pretty definitive declaration of having lost interest in playing Bond anymore - and in some respects we can hardly blame Craig for this, given he has been tied to the role for an entire decade now (his casting having been announced way back in October 2005).
However, Craig’s remarks do indicate it may simply be the post-’SPECTRE’ shoot exhaustion talking - and he does not definitively state that he will never play 007 again.
“I haven’t given it any thought For at least a year or two, I just don’t want to think about it. I don’t know what the next step is. I’ve no idea. Not because I’m trying to be cagey. Who the f*** knows?”
Somewhat bluntly, he does say, “If I did another Bond movie, it would only be for the money.”
Earlier remarks in the interview touch on how tiring Bond movies are to shoot - and Craig confirms that, as rumoured earlier on, there were initial plans to shoot ‘SPECTRE’ and the 25th Bond movie immediately after, which the actor refused to do.
“Well, I was contracted to do another one. That was all set up. But at the studio there was a real keenness to get it done as soon as possible. In fact, there was a conversation at one point that went: ‘Let’s film two movies back to back.’
“I just went: “You’re out of your f***ing minds.” In the nicest possible way. They’re just too big.”
Craig also voices his frustration with having to maintain the sharp look and physique that is expected of him in the role.
“It’s a drag. The best acting is when you’re not concerned about the surface. And Bond is the opposite of that. You have to be bothered about how you’re looking.
“It’s a struggle. I know that how Bond wears a suit and walks into a room is important. But as an actor I don’t want to give a f*** about what I look like! So I have to play with both things.
“In a way that works, as that’s Bond: he looks good and he doesn’t give a f*** what you think he looks like!“
Craig continues, “I’m not very cool. I’m not the coolest human being. I wish I was, but I’m not. And I don’t pretend to be cool. But playing James Bond, you have to be cool, and what the hell is cool? You could write a dissertation on it!”
On the subject of who might succeed him in the iconic role, the incumbent Bond is similarly forthright:
“Look, I don’t give a f***. Good luck to them! All I care about is that if I stop doing these things we’ve left it in a good place and people pick it up and make it better. Make it better, that’s all.”
On what advice he’d give the next Bond: ‘Literally I’d say two things. Firstly, it’s your decision. Don’t listen to anybody else. Well, do listen to everybody, but you have to make the choice at the end of the day. It’s your bed to lie on. And don’t be s**t!
“You’ve got to step up. People do not make movies like this any more. This is really rare now. So don’t be s**t… just make sure you’re great. You’ve got to push yourself as far as you can. It’s worth it, it’s James Bond.”
‘SPECTRE’ opens on 26 October.
Picture Credit: MGM-UA/Sony