Talented actors who were miscast/poor in Bond

Watched the recent Nelson Mandela film the other day and it reminded me that Naomi Harris is one of the best actresses working. She's brilliant. And that's one of the reasons that I've always found her disappointing as Moneypenny. In the run up to SF I remember there were worries about Berenice's acting (who didn't have many credits at all) while we pretty much all assumed that Naomie would be great but it turned out the other way around imo. Severine is probably my favourite Bond girl, she was fantastic, while Harris seemed wooden and her banter with Craig has always felt really forced to me. I actually much preferred Samantha Bond and was very disappointed.

Are there any other actors who we think were miscast/disappointing in Bond? Could extend to the Bond actors themselves too, I know that some fans believe that Dalton and Brosnan's best work comes outside the franchise and one of the criticisms of SP I've heard the most is that Waltz seemed to be phoning it in.

To be clear, I'm not talking about actors wasted by the material like Rosamund Pike for example. I'm on about cases where the actor themself failed to deliver.

I think Julian Glover is another you could make a case for. Very talented actor and yet he plays what's probably the most forgettable Bond villain of all time imo. The material doesn't help, he spends a decent amount of the film posing as Bond's ally so there's no grand introduction or iconic scene, nothing exciting or interesting at all to latch on to, but even after the reveal when he gets the odd opportunity to (e.g. the shark scene) he doesn't come across as very threatening or memorable in the slightest. Although to be fair I haven't seen FYEO for ages (I think the whole film is boring and forgettable so I never really feel the desire to watch it) so I might be doing him a disservice here.

What do you all think?
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Comments

  • DarthDimiDarthDimi Behind you!Moderator
    Posts: 23,333
    I know this is controversial but Christopher Walken, an otherwise brilliant actor, was good but not his usual great in AVTAK IMO.

    Benicio should have been cast in a Bond after THE USUAL SUSPECTS. His acting was very far off from where he learned to take it later in his career.

    Cec Minder, Norman Burton and John Terry might have been useful in some part but they were no Felix Leiter in my book.

    Rosie Carver was totally miscast. My senses are on Roger the entire time, seeking distraction in order to survive the ordeal.

    Many people will no doubt mention Denise Richards but I disagree. She put some fun in a film that otherwise refuses to have some. :-)
  • Posts: 6,432
    I loved Jonathan Price in Brazil though as Elliot Carver in TND I found his character painfull at times even cringe worthy.
  • Posts: 12,828
    @DarthDimi I agree on most of those except Walken and Del Toro. Walken made the best of a very bad script imo, deserved a much better film but I think he still put in a great performance (I think the bit that sums up while I like him is when he uncovers Bond's identity and seems excited at the thought of going up against him, I loved that manic energy he bought). I actually completely understand where you're coming from with Del Toro, he's hardly on the level he was in say Sicario in LTK and I don't doubt that he'd do much better now as the main villain in a Daniel Craig Bond film rather than a henchman in an 80s one, but I think part of the reason I like Dario so much as a henchman is how rough around the edges he feels. Made him feel all the more real, dirty and dangerous.

    I completely agree on Richards. I think if she wasn't such a big name people wouldn't have a problem with it. Miscast as a nuclear physicist? Maybe. And I'm not going to pretend she's an amazing actress. But as that particular Bond girl she was perfect. Really fun character and I like how the lack of chemistry with Brosnan was sort of made up for by how fit she was, even in Bond's eyes (the little pause he does before "first things first", he's not suave or seductive or charming, he just knows what's going to happen and he can't wait).
    I loved Jonathan Price in Brazil though as Elliot Carver in TND I found his character painfull at times even cringe worthy.

    I used to agree, one of the reasons I found TND so disappointing when I first saw it was because of how much of a let down Carver was after Trevelayn, but over the last couple of years I've come to really like him. He's hammy and OTT but he seems to be having a lot of fun, he brings infectious enthusiasm to it imo which along with the great lines he gets make him a really fun villain.
  • bondjamesbondjames You were expecting someone else?
    edited May 2017 Posts: 23,883
    I'm in agreement regarding Harris. I have not been impressed. Not one bit. The natural warmth which characterized Maxwell's interpretation is not there for me, and it's important.

    The same goes with Ralph Fiennes. As I mentioned on the 'Controversial Thread', I'm beginning to think he was miscast. Great actor, but he doesn't convey 'aggrieved' well without looking particularly angry. Lee always seemed likable, even when he was upset at Bond.

    Christoph Waltz as well. Too much Landa comes into his performance at times in SP, and I'm beginning to think he's shown us all he can bring (although both his Tarantino performances are definitely worthy of their respective Oscars).

    Julian Glover as well. Quite forgettable imho, but that's perhaps due to John Glen's directorial debut. I found most of the characters in FYEO (except for Columbo - how can you suppress Topol's charisma?) to be emasculated, including Roger Moore.

    I also am in agreement regarding Christopher Walken. I've always found his Zorin performance a little odd. Characterless, apart from a few flourishes here and there. He's far more interesting in Batman Returns as Max Shreck.

    I will add Robert Carlyle. His Renard is one of the most expressionless, uninteresting and forgettable villains in the history of Bondom.

    I don't agree on Denise Richards because the title of this thread is about talented actors. Richards is indeed talented, but in other more obvious ways, as noted by Bond when he made the "first things first" comment.

    I don't agree on Benicio Del Toro either. While it's far from his best performance, Dario is very memorable in LTK, and Del Toro gives him a slightly off kilter disposition which is unsettling. I'm sure he would be much better if he played a villain today, of course.

    I don't agree on Jonathan Pryce. I think he is excellent as the megalomaniac Carver. A camp super powerful villain in the tradition of Drax.
  • QuantumOrganizationQuantumOrganization We have people everywhere
    Posts: 1,187
    DarthDimi wrote: »
    I know this is controversial but Christopher Walken, an otherwise brilliant actor, was good but not his usual great in AVTAK IMO.

    Benicio should have been cast in a Bond after THE USUAL SUSPECTS. His acting was very far off from where he learned to take it later in his career.

    Cec Minder, Norman Burton and John Terry might have been useful in some part but they were no Felix Leiter in my book.

    Rosie Carver was totally miscast. My senses are on Roger the entire time, seeking distraction in order to survive the ordeal.

    Many people will no doubt mention Denise Richards but I disagree. She put some fun in a film that otherwise refuses to have some. :-)
    Walken is the best part of the movie for me. For me, his best role. Up their with the deer hunter.
  • ThunderfingerThunderfinger Das Boot Hill
    Posts: 45,489
    Halle Berry is the first to come to mind.
  • TheWizardOfIceTheWizardOfIce 'One of the Internet's more toxic individuals'
    Posts: 9,117
    added spunk to the rather small role of Christmas

    I'm struggling to come up with a quip that isn't sub Dick Emery levels.
  • Posts: 11,189
    Waltz was fine but not as scary/frightening as I was expecting. Maybe it was a case of expecting too much but he seemed to be playing a watered down version of his Nazi hunter character from IB.

    Also, I liked Pryce as Carver too.
  • DragonpolDragonpol https://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    Posts: 17,635
    added spunk to the rather small role of Christmas

    I'm struggling to come up with a quip that isn't sub Dick Emery levels.

    Just quote something about Christmas from the TWINE script!
  • TheWizardOfIceTheWizardOfIce 'One of the Internet's more toxic individuals'
    Posts: 9,117
    Dragonpol wrote: »
    added spunk to the rather small role of Christmas

    I'm struggling to come up with a quip that isn't sub Dick Emery levels.

    Just quote something about Christmas from the TWINE script!

    Resorting to a P&W gag is beneath me.
  • DragonpolDragonpol https://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    Posts: 17,635
    Dragonpol wrote: »
    added spunk to the rather small role of Christmas

    I'm struggling to come up with a quip that isn't sub Dick Emery levels.

    Just quote something about Christmas from the TWINE script!

    Resorting to a P&W gag is beneath me.

    True, just thought it might get the dog wheels working on something much wittier!
  • TheWizardOfIceTheWizardOfIce 'One of the Internet's more toxic individuals'
    Posts: 9,117
    Dragonpol wrote: »
    Dragonpol wrote: »
    added spunk to the rather small role of Christmas

    I'm struggling to come up with a quip that isn't sub Dick Emery levels.

    Just quote something about Christmas from the TWINE script!

    Resorting to a P&W gag is beneath me.

    True, just thought it might get the dog wheels working on something much wittier!

    Well I suppose I could go with something along the lines of delivering Christmas a present right up her chimney but I'm better than that.
  • DragonpolDragonpol https://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    Posts: 17,635
    Dragonpol wrote: »
    Dragonpol wrote: »
    added spunk to the rather small role of Christmas

    I'm struggling to come up with a quip that isn't sub Dick Emery levels.

    Just quote something about Christmas from the TWINE script!

    Resorting to a P&W gag is beneath me.

    True, just thought it might get the dog wheels working on something much wittier!

    Well I suppose I could go with something along the lines of delivering Christmas a present right up her chimney but I'm better than that.

    Sounds just like them!
  • Posts: 1,165
    Mathieu Amalric.
    Hands down.

    I absolutely loved him in Diving Bell and the Butterfly. He gives such an incredible performance in that movie. Plus, following Casino Royale with this new, modern, raw approach to Bond and with Forester directing I was full sure that Quantum would give us a complex, dramatic villain who would challenge Bond on a whole new level.

    Sadly that wasn't to be, and Amalric has the misfortune of being one of the most tragically wasted talents in the 50+ year history of the franchise.
  • peterpeter Toronto
    Posts: 7,972
    I loved the slime that Dominic Greene was
  • DragonpolDragonpol https://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    Posts: 17,635
    peter wrote: »
    I loved the slime that Dominic Greene was

    Clue was in the name!
  • Posts: 11,189
    Greene isn't imposing enough though to be a main adversary. He's more a secondary man.
  • DragonpolDragonpol https://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    Posts: 17,635
    BAIN123 wrote: »
    Greene isn't imposing enough though to be a main adversary. He's more a secondary man.

    Maybe that was intentional and Blofeld was actually pulling his strings all along?!
  • peterpeter Toronto
    Posts: 7,972
    I'd hafta disagree, Greene was a man in full control of big picture planning; and when he's backed into a corner he unleashes full on nutcase-- the rat backed in a corner.
    That fight with DC was insane
  • pachazopachazo Make Your Choice
    Posts: 7,314
    Dragonpol wrote: »
    BAIN123 wrote: »
    Greene isn't imposing enough though to be a main adversary. He's more a secondary man.

    Maybe that was intentional and Blofeld was actually pulling his strings all along?!

    Yes, that's how I've always seen it. Blofled, or at the time (before they got the rights), whoever the head of Quantum was supposed to be. In the end, he was nothing more than an errand boy for them.
  • bondjamesbondjames You were expecting someone else?
    edited May 2017 Posts: 23,883
    I wasn't too keen on the fight (although Almaric acted like a mad man).

    However, I really liked him as Greene. Suitably greasy. Greene is a small and insecure man, but is still dangerous on account of his volatile temperament. Very similar to Klaus Maria Brandauer as Largo.

    His bulging eyes remind me a little of Michael Emerson, and both can do villains quite well.
  • Posts: 14,755
    I loved Jonathan Price in Brazil though as Elliot Carver in TND I found his character painfull at times even cringe worthy.

    More a case of badly written than miscast.
  • DarthDimiDarthDimi Behind you!Moderator
    Posts: 23,333
    Pryce can be excellent and Carver, at least IMO, isn't too big a disappointment. I think Sophie Marceau and Robert Carlyle were treated much more poorly.
  • Posts: 6,432
    Excuse my poor spelling I am dyslexic, Pryce I felt over acted though Brosnan films were not the best written films that's for sure. Watched TWINE the other day the film did not serve many of the actors well, agree the two main antagonists could have be utilised better.
  • echoecho 007 in New York
    Posts: 5,867
    Agree about Carlyle and Waltz. Could have been so, so much better.
  • peterpeter Toronto
    Posts: 7,972
    I was so disappointed by Waltz; I didn't expect a physical threat, but did expect that the brains behind Spectre would be far more devious and menacing.

    All he ended up being was a slightly pompous baby. And Waltz at times seemed as if he was just breezily firing out the lines written for him so he could get his scenes over and done with (granted the script didn't give him lots to chew on, but as an actor, he really failed to dig deep and find something in his performance that would be interesting)
  • MalloryMallory Do mosquitoes have friends?
    Posts: 2,024
    I feel Spectre actors will be featuring a lot in this discussion.

    Waltz, Seydoux, Bautista and Bellucci... all wasted.
  • Posts: 4,325
    Halle Berry, Robert Carlyle, Christoph Waltz, Sophie Marceau, Naomie Harris, Sean Connery (YOLT), Pierce Brosnan (TWINE), Daniel Craig (SP)
  • Posts: 14,755
    I think most of the "miscast" ones mainly had badly written roles. A truly miscast one I think was Teri Hatcher. She is good as a sexy girl/milf next door, not a great actress but a capable one when well directed in the right role and her comfort zone. She was however utterly wrong for a Bond girl.
  • Creasy47Creasy47 In Cuba with Natalya.Moderator
    Posts: 40,202
    The biggest offenders for me are Halle Berry and Christoph Waltz. I'd add Teri Hatcher and Denise Richards, but I've never been impressed by their acting.
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