Should We Have Two 007's ?

edited July 2012 in Bond Movies Posts: 267
As a life long Bond fan and aficionado, it has become increasingly clear that there is an absolute need for at least two James Bonds - one is simply not enough!
Reaching such an outrageous conclusion has not been easy and I know that many will consider it a complete sacrilege particularly when the front of the excellent new artwork for all of the "Vintage Paperback" releases of Fleming's novels declare unequivocally "There Is Only One James Bond" ?
A quick trawl through this excellent site immediately exposes a demand for a multiplicity of different takes on our hero.
No character in fiction, with the possible exception of Sherlock Homes, has such a schizophrenic and demanding fan base. When the films are discussed many yearn for a more realistic movie Bond, a Bond closer to Flemings character, movies that have less fantasy and are more story driven.
At the same time a similar number, if not more, demand Roger Moore type humour from Craig's new Bond. A return of the gadgets and fantasy action spectaculars that may even involve another look at Bond's invisible car!
There is also as much consternation about which actor should have been or would be Bond. Suggestions as diverse as Cary Grant, David Niven, Ewan McGregor or even Jason Stathem populate the pages.
Equally divergent views are expressed when discussing continuation novels, music scores, our heroes' wardrobe, book cover art and everything else Bond related under the sun.
It would be easy to dismiss all of this as the contrasting views of global fans that have personalised their relationship with a hero that his existed in one form or another for close to sixty years.
Doubtless there is some truth in this but for the most part, the views divide strongly into two separate camps - the traditionalists and the modernist and it's my contention that satisfaction can only be given by providing each with their own Bond.
As a traditionalist, I would love to see the whole story told again as a period piece. It could start by setting the stage with a quality BBC drama adaptations of Charlie Higson's fabulous "Young Bond" novels and then progress through each and every novel. Remaking them in chronological order and keeping them as close to the books as possible. Frankly, I think even the early Connery movies digressed from the stories sufficiently to render the remakes completely fresh. The latter Connery, Moore and Brosnan movies only shared titles with Fleming's work leaving his stories untold through the art of the screen and would enthral millions if told faithfully and set in the year they were penned.
Us traditionalists could revel in the originality of the project and when you consider today's appetite for all things retro, I'm sure it would be a huge success.
Indeed,the traditionalist project for the literary Bond could evolve in a similar vein. Higson could perhaps give us Bond's war time adventures and take him up to Casino Royale. Boyd is already handling 1969 and future selected continuation authors could take our traditional Bond onwards from there.
This would leave the second Bond the complete flexibility to surf on any modern trend and to take any cinematic or literary path chosen safe in the knowledge that traditionalists would not have to be appeased.
What do you fellow spies think of this hypothesis and who would we select to play Fleming's real, original hero?
Regards,
Bentley

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Comments

  • Posts: 12,506
    After all the nonsense with Mclory and legal stuff? No thank you! That's why we missed out on 2 possible Dalton movies in 91 and 93!

    If you had 2 Bonds then people would become fed up with the charactor and make it likely that the series would be mothballed for atleast 10 years as a guess? I am happy with the current feed of movies. Its bad enough we have now had a 4 year gap.
  • doubleoegodoubleoego #LightWork
    Posts: 11,139
    No.

    Bond is a contemporary character. The character at least in the movie-verse needs to move forward.

    Bond as a character is probably the most unique cinematic fictional character of all time. Officially 50 years and only 6 actors. Being Bond is an exclusive gig.

    Sometimes less is more and with the popularity and demand for audiences to see Bond, having only 1 actor works as best as it leaves us all wanting more and appreciating what we get.

    In short, there should only be one Bond and that's all there is to it.
  • DarthDimiDarthDimi Behind you!Moderator
    Posts: 23,715
    It wouldn't work. What keeps Bond alive, among other things, is the constant shift from one tone to the next, always just in time to prevent one tone from becoming too tiresome. Many fans shouted their enthusiasm for CR, saying it at last took us back to the style of GE or even the grittiness of LTK. Others, however, much prefer the tone of MR and DAD, and are therefore hoping that SF will deliver exactly that. One film pleases column A, another film pleases column B.

    But, if we keep mass producing films to satisfy both, they too will in the end grow tired, craving something new. It'd be counter-productive, not to mention a marketing nightmare.
  • DB5DB5
    Posts: 408
    We,ve talked before about a "period piece" Bond, a Bond set in the 1950's, closely following Fleming's novels. I think I can convincingly say that the earliest that will ever happen, if at all, is the year 2039. That's the year that the copyright runs out (author's death plus 75 years) and the James Bond character falls into the public domain. until that time there is no way that the Fleming estate is going to allow any remakes of the original films or allow two Bonds to exist simultaneously (1967 and 1983 notwithstanding).
  • 0BradyM0Bondfanatic70BradyM0Bondfanatic7 Quantum Floral Arrangements: "We Have Petals Everywhere"
    Posts: 28,694
    NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!
  • MurdockMurdock The minus world
    Posts: 16,336
    DB5 wrote:
    We,ve talked before about a "period piece" Bond, a Bond set in the 1950's, closely following Fleming's novels. I think I can convincingly say that the earliest that will ever happen, if at all, is the year 2039. That's the year that the copyright runs out (author's death plus 75 years) and the James Bond character falls into the public domain. until that time there is no way that the Fleming estate is going to allow any remakes of the original films or allow two Bonds to exist simultaneously (1967 and 1983 notwithstanding).

    Couldn't the Fleming estate renew the copyright?
  • ChevronChevron Northern Ireland
    Posts: 370
    RogueAgent wrote:
    After all the nonsense with Mclory and legal stuff? No thank you! That's why we missed out on 2 possible Dalton movies in 91 and 93!

    No, it was to do with legal proceedings resulting from the Bond franchise being deemed to be undervalued when UA was sold to MGM. Or something like that.

    For some time I've thought that there could be the main franchise with a new movie every two or three years. In between there could be lower budget 'experimental' Bond movies. So for example if Tarantino still wants to do his black and white 1950s-set Casino Royale it could slot in there.

    Not that it will ever happen.
  • HASEROTHASEROT has returned like the tedious inevitability of an unloved season---
    Posts: 4,399
    as much as i love Bond.. one IS enough... anymore of these rival films getting made means overkill.. the general movie going audience will get sick of it - and then we all lose, because Bond would go on a very long hiatus..

    so... no thanks
  • Posts: 267
    HASEROT wrote:
    as much as i love Bond.. one IS enough... anymore of these rival films getting made means overkill.. the general movie going audience will get sick of it - and then we all lose, because Bond would go on a very long hiatus..

    so... no thanks

    Dear haserot,
    I can't agree.
    Look at the success of the fabulous Sherlock Homes series.
    We have an amazing modern interpretation with Benedict Cumberbatch on the small screen with story lines that are extremely faithful to the source novels.
    At the same time, there is a rip roaring cinema version featuring Robert Downey Jr. Ironically, although this is the series with the period setting, it is the flat out all action version that has much less to do with the source novels.
    Whilst all of this is going on, the first ever approved continuation novel - "A Study In Silk" by Andrew Horowitz - has been published to international claim.
    This approach shows a huge creativity and has been extremely well received by Homes afficianados. Of course, some like one and not the other but it works well.
    For us Fleming traditionalists, the Bond franchise, with the exception of the "Young Bond" and "Moneypenny Diary" spinoffs, is just caught in a spirall of increasingly silly films and books.
    Every Man His Own 007.
    Regards,
    Bentley

  • 0BradyM0Bondfanatic70BradyM0Bondfanatic7 Quantum Floral Arrangements: "We Have Petals Everywhere"
    Posts: 28,694
    The Downey Sherlock films may not carry over parts of the character's characterization and make him more bizarre, they are far from "all action". The plots have clever mysteries, with winks to Doyle and great villains, like Jared Harris's masterful Moriarty.
  • Lancaster007Lancaster007 Shrublands Health Clinic, England
    Posts: 1,874
    No.
  • HASEROTHASEROT has returned like the tedious inevitability of an unloved season---
    Posts: 4,399
    Bentley wrote:
    HASEROT wrote:
    as much as i love Bond.. one IS enough... anymore of these rival films getting made means overkill.. the general movie going audience will get sick of it - and then we all lose, because Bond would go on a very long hiatus..

    so... no thanks

    Dear haserot,
    I can't agree.
    Look at the success of the fabulous Sherlock Homes series.
    We have an amazing modern interpretation with Benedict Cumberbatch on the small screen with story lines that are extremely faithful to the source novels.
    At the same time, there is a rip roaring cinema version featuring Robert Downey Jr. Ironically, although this is the series with the period setting, it is the flat out all action version that has much less to do with the source novels.
    Whilst all of this is going on, the first ever approved continuation novel - "A Study In Silk" by Andrew Horowitz - has been published to international claim.
    This approach shows a huge creativity and has been extremely well received by Homes afficianados. Of course, some like one and not the other but it works well.
    For us Fleming traditionalists, the Bond franchise, with the exception of the "Young Bond" and "Moneypenny Diary" spinoffs, is just caught in a spirall of increasingly silly films and books.
    Every Man His Own 007.
    Regards,
    Bentley

    i am talking about from strictly a film standpoint... your comparison of Holmes doesn't relate to my argument, because you're encompassing multiple forms of media - film, television, literature and so on..... my argument is strictly based on film.... there is no good reason to have 2 different Bond franchises going at the same time, none... #1 it would only add confusion to the general audience... #2 it would start to overstay it's welcome, and people would eventually get sick of it due to overexposure - it's the way things go...

    if you're talking about Bond books and TV shows (the later which I am not thrilled about either).. then thats different... but if you're saying that Bond could not only survive, but thrive at the box office with a constant repeat of what happened in 1983, then you're misguided.
  • Posts: 267
    Dear Haserot,
    I'm talking about a franchise not a specific media.
    The start date for the untold Fleming stories is 1953 not '83.
    Unless I'm "misguided", the only three Bond events in 1983 were two very silly films (Octopussy & NSNA) neither of which had anything but the most tenuous link to Fleming's fabulous originals and the launch of the creditable continuation novel, "Icebreaker" by the late, great John Gardner so I'm a little ensure as to what would be constantly repeated?
    Regards,
    Bentley
  • edited July 2012 Posts: 11,425
    I would love to see Bond done as a more low-key period piece. I'd happily see the BBC or actually ITV given the job. It will never happen, or not at least until EON implodes and they stop making real Bond movies.
  • HASEROTHASEROT has returned like the tedious inevitability of an unloved season---
    edited July 2012 Posts: 4,399
    Bentley wrote:
    Dear Haserot,
    I'm talking about a franchise not a specific media.
    The start date for the untold Fleming stories is 1953 not '83.
    Unless I'm "misguided", the only three Bond events in 1983 were two very silly films (Octopussy & NSNA) neither of which had anything but the most tenuous link to Fleming's fabulous originals and the launch of the creditable continuation novel, "Icebreaker" by the late, great John Gardner so I'm a little ensure as to what would be constantly repeated?
    Regards,
    Bentley

    first off.. dont insult my intelligence, I know when the Bond novels were written..

    secondly... again, i am strictly speaking about film... only 1 event happened in the world of film when it pertains to James Bond, and that was 'Octopussy' vs 'Never Say Never Again'..... you honestly believe that 2 different Bond movies made by 2 different studios would be a good thing?

  • Posts: 267
    Getafix wrote:
    I would love to see Bond done as a more low-key period piece. I'd happily see the BBC or actually ITV given the job. It will never happen, or not at least until EON implodes and they stop making real Bond movies.

    Dear Getafix,
    We are on the same page.
    You could well be correct that imagining the Fleming novels filmed as they were meant to be could remain a distant dream.
    That said, EON could well see it as an additional opportunity for their company.
    Given the success of the "Young Bond" franchise, I would be surprised if they haven't discussed it.
    Legend has it that Quentin Tarantino and Pierce Brosnan pitched the idea of filming "Casino Royale" as a period piece. Evidently, although the idea was rejected, they were influenced into a grittier direction so maybe there is light at the end of the tunnel.
    We live in hope and to propose seeing "Moonraker" filmed with the qualitative approach that the BBC have given some of the Le Carre novels has got to be interesting to `Bond traditionalists.
    In the interim, I just hope "Skyfall" isn't too silly.
    Regards,
    Bentley



  • edited July 2012 Posts: 12,837
    Some sort of period piece TV series would be cool, but not more rival films.
  • Agent007391Agent007391 Up, Up, Down, Down, Left, Right, Left, Right, B, A, Start
    Posts: 7,854
    Y'know, why not a rival film? Give the old actors a chance to reprise the role. As much as I can't stand NSNA, I did enjoy that they brought back Connery instead of casting another actor as Bond. Think about it, maybe Moore could have fun playing an "old age" Bond. A friend and I were having a conversation about this yesterday, about having a Bond film where he suffers from old age, like losing his teeth or going through Alzheimer's or something. The serious fans (those who prefer more serious films, a la Craig) would get their treat with the EON film, while the funny fans (those who prefer more humorous films, a la Moore) would get their fill from the rival film.
  • edited July 2012 Posts: 4,813
    I predict that Bond movies will be 'set in the present' for many years to come.

    When it gets to the point that we, in real life, have flying cars and and such high technology that it hardly even feels like 'traditional Bond' anymore, there will be another Casino Royale- style overhaul-- only this time, they will be period pieces.

    * I say flying cars as an example- which may possibly never happen, but I think you get the point I'm trying to make :)

    Y'know, why not a rival film? Give the old actors a chance to reprise the role. As much as I can't stand NSNA, I did enjoy that they brought back Connery instead of casting another actor as Bond.
    I also like this idea-- while NSNA is very heavily flawed, the theory was pretty sound!
    I've said before that I'd love to see Tim or Pierce come back for one more round! Or in a few years, a 50+ year old Daniel can come back to rival whoever the 7th Bond actor is!
  • Agent007391Agent007391 Up, Up, Down, Down, Left, Right, Left, Right, B, A, Start
    Posts: 7,854
    I predict that Bond movies will be 'set in the present' for many years to come.

    When it gets to the point that we, in real life, have flying cars and and such high technology that it hardly even feels like 'traditional Bond' anymore, there will be another Casino Royale- style overhaul-- only this time, they will be period pieces.

    * I say flying cars as an example- which may possibly never happen, but I think you get the point I'm trying to make :)

    No, even then will Bond films still be contemporary, and only when enough fans bitch and plead for a "period piece" will there be one.
  • NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

    I'm afraid I must echo this sentiment-

    NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!


    I feel better now.

    NSNA is a prime example of why this should never be attempted again. It only leads to divided fans, and we have plenty of that right here.
  • edited July 2012 Posts: 4,813
    My point there was that NSNA looked good on paper but the movie was pretty terrible when it all came down to it

    If someone could come along and make a legitimately awesome Bond movie, that just happens to not star the 'current' OO7, then that would be awesome

    It could happen ;)
  • Agent007391Agent007391 Up, Up, Down, Down, Left, Right, Left, Right, B, A, Start
    Posts: 7,854
    Y'know, in my opinion, NSNA is only slightly worse than OP. I only like OP because of the Cold War stuff.
  • Posts: 5,634
    One James Bond is enough, just let this idea go

    I hope this never sees the light of day
  • Agent007391Agent007391 Up, Up, Down, Down, Left, Right, Left, Right, B, A, Start
    Posts: 7,854
    One James Bond is enough, just let this idea go

    I hope this never sees the light of day

    A good deal of us want the same thing with the whole "James Bond is a codename" idea, but like that particular piece of BS, this probably won't go away.
  • edited July 2012 Posts: 2,341
    One 007 is enough. Remember 1983? OP versus NSNA? 1967? YOLT and CR?

  • Posts: 5,634
    as far as I'm concerned, there was only one Bond release in 1967, I fail to recognize Casino Royale 67 as anything resembling James Bond, I never liked the release anyway. You Only Live Twice was a poor film, but at least it was James Bond, and an official part of the movie series

    You could say the same for 1983 and Never Say Never Again, an ageing Connery has a bit of fun and pulls in a few extra dollars in an unofficial spoof release but it never really takes itself seriously. There's no real harm done however and we know what the real and actual Bond films were for each respective year, but as always, one 007 is suffice
  • Posts: 1,817
    My first commandment as a Bond fan is: there is no other author than Fleming and EON is the only producer.
    That's why I only read Fleming's Bond books and I hate non official Bonds.
  • Posts: 267
    Fellow Agents,
    It's difficult to know how many visitors to this site have actually read the novels and this makes the debate challenging.
    The question is not wether one silly film (Octopussy) is better than another (Never Say Never Again).
    It is more about giving the quality screen interpretation to Fleming's novels that Le Carre has enjoyed. Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy being one example.
    The relitavely recent "Casino Royale" was, in my opinion, a reasonable movie and had a passing resemblance to the novel.
    It was not however, set in 1953 with the second world war just over and the cold war starting. Nor was it located in Royale - Les - Eaux. Nor does it feature a plan to bankrupt a fifth columnist working for Smersh.
    The fact is, the original story has never been told and they would all now make remarkable period pieces wether filmed for the small or large screen.
    Regards,
    Bentley
  • HASEROTHASEROT has returned like the tedious inevitability of an unloved season---
    edited July 2012 Posts: 4,399
    Bentley wrote:
    Fellow Agents,
    It's difficult to know how many visitors to this site have actually read the novels and this makes the debate challenging.
    The question is not wether one silly film (Octopussy) is better than another (Never Say Never Again).
    It is more about giving the quality screen interpretation to Fleming's novels that Le Carre has enjoyed. Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy being one example.
    The relitavely recent "Casino Royale" was, in my opinion, a reasonable movie and had a passing resemblance to the novel.
    It was not however, set in 1953 with the second world war just over and the cold war starting. Nor was it located in Royale - Les - Eaux. Nor does it feature a plan to bankrupt a fifth columnist working for Smersh.
    The fact is, the original story has never been told and they would all now make remarkable period pieces wether filmed for the small or large screen.
    Regards,
    Bentley

    would the novels themselves, if they were 100% translated into a film, make a good movie?..... with all honesty - it's 50/50 at best.... two different mediums often times can't produce the same results, because what works in a book might not work on film, and vice versa... for example, Jurassic Park the novel is different in a lot of areas than it's big screen counterpart - but both are excellent forms of their respected mediums.. same goes for The Shining... and i'll use The Shining again for the example how it can fail... they made a faithful 3 or 4 part miniseries to The Shining novel in the late 90s, and it was awful... so, sometimes creative license can be a good thing.

    as a Bond fan, would I love to see faithful adaptations of the Fleming works, of course - but, to the average viewer, a faithful adaptation of Casino Royale might be boring.... its anyone's guess - but i think it would be a fun experience if they did them in a miniseries on HBO ala 'Band of Brothers'.. where it only goes from CR thru to TMWTGG and thats it, and each part is a new book... i would tune in to that - as a Bond fan...

    the average person might get confused... and never underestimate the stupidity of the average everyday person
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