The final press conference promoting Skyfall at a recent NY press event featured James Bond himself, Daniel Craig, and the producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson. They started off with the action of the film, with the steady camera, and the classic look to it. Craig was first with a question, asked what it was like to do so much of his own action.
"I started rehearsing those scenes well before we started shooting. I'm not a fighter, I pretend I'm one. We call it bullshit boxing," said Craig. "With the stuff on the train, it's going from side to side and you're thinking about staying on your feet most of the time! We have constant dialogue about 'this fist looks good going into this face like that.' The big challenges for me were a lot of running in this film, which I hate. Bond doesn't seem to ever just walk in a room. I ended up doing a day's filming which on paper looked easy, I had no dialogue. But it's Bond goes from A to B to C, and I'm just running and it's all at a sprint."
On the flip side, the film also delves into the personal side of Bond.
"Nobody told me that we couldn't make an action movie with a good story," said Craig. "We always go back to the Fleming novels, and he was vicious to Bond; he tries to kill him, he's so conflicted. I was really impressed by the writing here. It was a great, emotional story. They employed me, it's their fault!
"But yeah, it's about families and parentage and going back to his childhood and just destroy it and begin again.
"If you get the balance between the deeper story and the action right, it makes it much more successful."
Craig said he hopes that spoilers on the film don't get out, a feeling echoed by the producers. "We always try to keep the scripts confidential," said Wilson. "We had 3-400 scripts out and none of this got revealed, so that's a testament to the whole crew."
"I'll tell you how secret it is," added Broccoli, "my daughter, who's twenty saw the screening three days ago, and when a [spoiler redacted - big moment] hit, she said, 'mama, how could you do this to me?' That's how secret we kept it!"
Of the homages, Craig did say that they were conscious of it being the 50 year anniversary. "We needed to celebrate it!"
There are some big underwater scenes, which Craig said is his "favorite bit. No one can find you, when we finish shooting I just drop to the bottom of the water in the tank and put the respirator in and hide. I love scuba diving, so… then you'll hear a voice saying Where's Daniel?"
Wilson joked, "I have to say, Barbara makes sure every film that Daniel gets wet!" "Preferably in a pair of tiny shorts," she quipped back.
Using new technology and having a major cyber threat in the films is necessary, said Wilson, because "this is a part of what's going on and the public is not very aware of it. The Cyber war is a real war. Nothing we showed there is beyond the present capability of military hackers to achieve!"
Daniel Craig was not disappointed that there weren't a lot of fancy gadgets. "To have Bond on a computer, sitting at a screen, is f***ing boring! But we brought Ben in and he's a computer whiz, and that clashing of personalities is great. And the gadgets we do have, we used them, we didn't just put them in extraneously."
He was a little "bewildered that they would even come to me," when first approached for the role of James Bond. "I am incredibly proud and lucky to be in a position I'm in here. To be in this film, to be around when the franchise is 50 years old. As soon as we get the script, I'll be really up for doing Bond 24!"
Wilson, "We're not going to let him get away!"
Craig's clothing and other items in the films were sold for his charity recently, and Wilson noted that his secrecy and humility was the more impressive thing.
Of sexuality, Craig said, "I don't see the world in sexual divides, I really don't. Someone suggested that [the villain] Silva might be gay and I said, no, he'd f*** anything! I think they play things so well in the script, and I love Javier, he plays it well."
Wilson said he saw no risk in addressing the character's age in the movie, and having the past affect the story. "He's missed a step, and wounded, but it's part of the story, it's all story, and we shouldn't shy away from it."Skyfall premieres October 26, 2012 in the UK and November 9, 2012 in the US