Throwback to the controversial casting: Was Daniel Craig's Bond not 'handsome' enough?
Reminisce about the time 'Casino Royale' director Martin Campbell questioned Daniel Craig's traditional James Bond allure, leading to one of cinema's boldest casting decisions.
Daniel Craig and Martin Campbell (Source: Koimoi)
Hollywood is filled with tales of casting might-have-beens, but few remain as contentious as Daniel Craig's initial appointment as James Bond. Stepping into the debonair shoes of the iconic 007 role is no easy feat, and as the world reflects, it's evident that even the filmmakers had their doubts.
Martin Campbell's handsome hesitation
In an era dominated by traditionally good-looking Bonds, the selection of Daniel Craig was set to shake, not stir, the franchise's foundations. "Casino Royale" director Martin Campbell, who had previously helmed "GoldenEye" with the dashing Pierce Brosnan, recently admitted his apprehensions to Express UK. Reflecting on the Bonds of yore - Sean Connery, Roger Moore, and Brosnan, Campbell noted, “All handsome guys, all sexy, all very attractive to women and so forth.” He added about Craig, “Daniel was obviously tougher and rugged, but he wasn’t a traditional handsome guy.” Yet, Campbell's recognition of Craig's immense acting talent made him a frontrunner, despite the initial beauty reservations.
The great Bond debate: A democratic decision
The process of selecting Bond was, according to Campbell, a democratic endeavor. With "eight people" under consideration, the selection process was intense, involving a round table discussion with producers, the casting director, and more. A unanimous decision was paramount. Among those considered was a younger Henry Cavill, who Campbell mentioned "looked great" but felt too youthful for the role.
Yet, as history shows, the final nod to Craig did not sit well with everyone. Debbie McWilliams, the longtime Bond casting director, recounted the adverse press reaction to Craig's selection in a 2021 interview with Entertainment Weekly. “It was unbelievably negative,” McWilliams mentioned. In the face of such backlash, Craig, instead of crumbling, chose to persevere. “And he just kept his head down, got on with the job and then the film came out and everybody went, ‘Oh wow, I think we quite like him after all.’”
Fast forward to today, Daniel Craig's tenure as Bond remains one of the franchise's most celebrated. With five films under his belt and an exit after 2021's "No Time to Die," the Bond legacy endures as fans eagerly await the revelation of the next James Bond.
Looking back, it's a testament to the power of intuition, conviction, and the undeniable prowess of Daniel Craig that the world got to experience a different kind of Bond - one who was undeniably tough, rugged, and yes, sexy in his own right.
Several parts of the text in this article, including the title, were generated with the help of an AI tool.