Sam Heughan is not the first and will certainly not be the last to try and play the role of the most famous franchise in the world, 007. The special agent ‘James Bond’ is a character that not all are considered worth playing and during an interview with the Entertainment Weekly Sam talked about what he was told about playing the iconic role.
Heughan stated in his upcoming memoir “Waypoints: My Scottish Journey,” which will be released on October 25, that his audition was “cloaked in such secrecy” that he “felt like a real-life agent,” reflecting the espionage plot itself.
Nobody ever verified that I was being considered for the lead part, but I knew. Of course, the thought of being considered for such a famous person blew my mind. In ‘The Living Daylights,’ I liked Timothy Dalton because he was darker than the other performers. But another Scot, Sir Sean Connery, had it all: charisma, ruthlessness, physical presence, and the perfect accent. ‘My name is James Bond,’ he says. I had to tell myself to take a deep breath and let them see what I could accomplish with the character.
Heughan remembered the situation that happened where he auditioned with the casting director. He met with the producer, and the director of ‘Casino Royale’ for which Heughan had a thought in mind that he would play the role. The role didn’t come to him and went to Daniel Craig, but he had thought that after the audition the role would be his. Here’s what he had to say about the overall experience:
So I went to Bond HQ and auditioned with the casting director. Following that, I was invited to the next floor, where producer Barbara Broccoli, like M, sat in a leather chair across a vast table. In front of her, a replica gold revolver acted as a centrepiece. Martin Campbell, the director of ‘Casino Royale,’ was also present. We talked briefly about Scotland and Bond, I read the scene once, and then I departed. It happened so quickly, perspiration forming beneath my leather jacket. It was all very cool, and it was topped off with Barbara’s charm and joy. I was half-afraid I was about to go when I left.
“When I learned the role had gone elsewhere, however, the feedback I received boiled down to the fact that I wasn’t edgy enough by nature. I’m always keen to take on criticism so I can improve as an actor, but the suggestion seemed to be that I lacked this quality in my real character. I could not see what bearing that would have on playing the role, but it was out of my hands, and meant to be.”
“It wasn’t a question of becoming a bad boy,” he continues. “I realized that the edge the Bond team sought could be achieved through self-confidence, which to be fair I was certainly lacking at the time.”
To be sure, producer Michael G. Wilson has stated that every Bond must audition using a sequence from the 1963 film “From Russia With Love,” starring Sean Connery. While speculation about who would portray Bond following Daniel Craig’s exit continues, Idris Elba has denied speculations that he is on the shortlist. Regé-Jean Page, Jacob Elordi, and Tom Hardy have also been mentioned as possible candidates. The next Bond picture, though, is at least two years away.
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