Ten People Who Should Have Been In A James Bond Film by Luke Quantrill
Falls very much into the Udo Kier category. A fun Bond villain that
never was. Rutger Hauer always benefitted from a very recognisable look
and he's always been a performer who had his own particular style of
acting. He can be a bit OTT but he always puts a lot into any character
he plays and you could imagine that he'd have relished a major role as
a baddie in a 007 film. In Bladerunner he did his best to steal the
film from Harrison Ford and in The Hitcher, another of his most
remembered films, Hauer just had a tremendous amount of fun being
creepy and scaring the s**t out of C Thomas Howell. Still in demand
with welcome appearances in the likes of Sin City and Batman Begins in
Asia blotted her copybook with 007 fans by trashing all things James
Bond during the slightly irritating publicity tour for 'XXX', a film on
which I have no view because I never got around to watching it,
but...the eccentric Argento has a certain je ne sais quoi and could
have slotted into a Bond Girl or villain role reasonably comfortably.
Apparently turned down a role in The World Is Not Enough. The 'cigar
girl' I believe from various articles. It wasn't much of a role though
and you can probably understand her reasons for not doing it. It's a
shame that she could not have been persuaded to take a more substantial
part in a recent James Bond film.
Whether we're talking about the villain or M, Hopkins was a natural
person to suggest for a James Bond film for quite a period. There was
much speculation about him playing Eliott Carver in Tomorrow Never
Dies, with Pierce Brosnan later suggesting that script problems
scuppered any chance of this casting, which would have been something
of a coup at the time with the Bond franchise only just back on its
feet after being written off. Hopkins could have been a great villain
but possibly an even better M. He was offered the role of Miss
Moneypenny in GoldenEye but after much consideration he decided to
decline and they gave the part to Samantha Bond.
A long and distinguished career has seen John Hurt play everyone from
Quentin Crisp to Alan Clark, plus of course, most famously, Kane in
Alien. His finest hour though was probably The Elephant Man. Hurt has
camped it up as a villain here and there (You could ask if Hurt would
have been interested in James Bond but he did Jake Speed and is in
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom Of the Crystal Skull, so...) but an
appearance in a Bond film never surfaced, which is a shame. The
interesting thing about John Hurt - apart from the little known fact
that he is allergic to biscuits - is that you could have seen him make
a very interesting M or Tanner. Or Q even.
Graduated from a role on the Italian version of 'Blankety Blank' to
films like The Passion Of The Christ and the Matrix sequels. You'll
notice that the likes of Tilda Swinton or Samantha Morton haven't been
poached for key roles in Quantum Of Solace. Why? Because the studio go
for looks rather than acting ability when they cast the female leads.
For this reason it's strange that Bellucci, who has the archetypal,
generic 'Bond Girl look' hasn't turned up in a James Bond film yet.
Widely reported to have been Pierce Brosnan's choice to play Paris
Carver in Tomorrow Never Dies. It isn't tremendously difficult to
imagine that she might have done as well as Lois Lane did in that film.
The Italian actress was a popular suggestion for a lead role in a Bond
film for several years and probably still is now.
If anyone had the right look to be a James Bond villain it was the
veteran German actor Udo Kier. He has that knack of being able to look
like a bit of a nutcase but with a surface veneer of sophistication.
Plus, he has an interesting look generally (with a very penetrating
stare) and a certain sort of icy charisma. He might have come off as a
more menacing and straightforward version of Curt Jurgens. Check out
his appearance in the original Blade film and picture him as a James
Joan Collins is best known for her trashy turn as Alexis Carrington in
glitzy US soap opera Dynasty and having Cinzano chucked over her by
Leonard Rossitter in a series of comedy adverts for British television.
What is Cinzano? Has anyone ever gone into a bar and said "I'll have a
double Cinzano please" ? But I digress. Joan was quite a pin-up in the
sixties and early seventies (and a good friend of Roger Moore) so it's
a bit weird that she never ended up in a James Bond adventure. Could
concievably have been a Bond girl or a villain, JC wasn't the greatest
actress ever to step into a film studio but she had an undeniable poise
and the ability to camp things up and bring a bit of fun to a role.
One of the very best actors in Britain, Wilkinson can do a villainous
turn but was (or possibly still is) the fans most popular choice to be
the next M. I don't know much about Wilkinson but he always seems quite
serious in interviews so I have no idea if he'd ever be interested in
James Bond, where, as M for example, he'd be required to do more than
one film. It's highly unlikely that Wilkinson will ever play M now but
I suppose there is a small possibility he might yet turn up as a
I saw Peter Cushing in Whitstable town centre once coming out of a
bookshop shortly before he passed away. He used to have his lunch in
the same tea shop shop everyday - a true gentleman loved by everyone in
the town. I wish I'd asked for his autograph or just said hello. But I
digress. I was on my way to buy my weekly Marvel/DC comics from a very
old man who had a ramshackle newsagents at the top of the high street.
For some reason (possibly fear of shoplifters) he used to block the
entrance to his shop with a huge table and you had to stand there and
wait about two hours for him to notice he had a customer. Once he
appeared you'd ask if the comics were in and then he'd disappear for
another two hours to look for them. But I digress again. Peter Cushing
was a class act who threw himself into every part he played. He could
be incredibly nasty in a baddie role or play heroic types like Sherlock
Holmes and Van Helsing. I'm not sure what sort of role might have
suited him best in a James Bond film but it's a shame some sort of
cameo or brief appearance couldn't have been arranged. He gave those
campy Amicus and Hammer films a big dose of gravitas and class whenever
he appeared and a similar contribution to a James Bond film would have
been very welcome.
What can I say about my good friend Sean Pertwee that hasn't already
been said? Possibly the - (Oh dear, we seem to have run out of
bandwidth - Editor)
- Luke Quantrill