How Dream House‘s Daniel Craig Should Be Looking Beyond Bond

by Ethan Alter September 28, 2011 9:00 am
How <I>Dream House</I>‘s Daniel Craig Should Be Looking Beyond Bond

Although he's only wielded James Bond's license to kill in two movies -- with a third on the way sometime next year -- Daniel Craig is wasting little time preparing for life after 007. Since the release of Quantum of Solace in 2008, the British actor has shot five non-Bond features, including this summer's Cowboys & Aliens and two highly-anticipated fall films, Steven Spielberg's The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn and David Fincher's The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. He's also headlining the new horror movie Dream House, which isn't being screened for critics in advance of its opening this Friday... a move that doesn't inspire much confidence in its quality. Still, you can't blame Craig for booking so many gigs in between Bond movies; he's undoubtedly noticed how his predecessors in the role of the world's most famous secret agent have occasionally struggled to move on once their days ordering shaken, not stirred martinis are done. Here's a look back at how the other Men That Have Been Bond have fared once the mantle was passed to someone else.

Daniel Craig and Javier Bardem Scale Great Heights In Skyfall

by Ethan Alter November 6, 2012 7:00 am
Daniel Craig and Javier Bardem Scale Great Heights In <i>Skyfall</i>

After the strong start that was 2006's Casino Royale, the re-booted, Daniel Craig-led James Bond series hit a major rough patch with Quantum of Solace. After a four-year break, though, Bond is back and better than ever in Skyfall, which is already burning up the box office charts overseas. (It opens in the U.S. on Friday.) The cast and crew of Skyfall -- including Craig, Javier Bardem (who plays his nemesis, Silva), Naomie Harris and Bérénice Marlohe (the requisite Bond Girls) and director Sam Mendes -- passed through New York recently and spoke with the press about celebrating Bond's 50th anniversary with one of the best 007 outings to date.

Skyfall: Your Burning Questions Answered

by Ethan Alter November 9, 2012 12:01 am
<i>Skyfall</i>: Your Burning Questions Answered

Let's start off by answering the biggest question first: yes, Skyfall really is as great as you've been hearing. The 23rd entry in the venerable James Bond franchise isn't just the best studio blockbuster of the year -- featuring a better story than The Avengers, fewer logic gaps than The Dark Knight Rises and rip-roaring action sequences that easily outclass pretenders like The Hunger Games and Battleship -- it also ranks in the top five (hell, maybe even the top three) Bond adventures that have come along in 007's now 50-year big-screen history. In a fall that's packed with awards-friendly prestige pictures, Skyfall is reminder that a smart, beautifully-crafted and, in general, kick-ass action movie can be as worthy of serious acclaim and respect as any historical biopic or weighty drama. With that out of the way, time to get to some of your other burning queries:

I Want My DVD: Tuesday, March 20, 2012

by Ethan Alter March 20, 2012 6:00 am
I Want My DVD: Tuesday, March 20, 2012

It's time to start the music. Again.

Trailers Without Pity: The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo

by Ethan Alter December 14, 2011 12:26 pm
Trailers Without Pity: <i>The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo</i>

David Fincher returns to the realm of serial killers and the men (and women) that pursue them with The Girls with the Dragon Tattoo, a Hollywood-ized treatment of the first installment in Stieg Larsson's bestselling Millennium trilogy.

Bonding With 007's New Girl

by Tippi Blevins October 7, 2008 1:18 pm
Bonding With 007's New Girl One of the Bond girls from Quantum of Solace has been surprisingly candid lately about some of her more unusual physical attributes. Get your mind out of the gutter--it's not that kind of physical attribute. London's Daily Mail reports that Gemma Arterton reveals in the newest Esquire magazine that she was born with six fingers on each hand. The extra digits were tied at the base an allowed to wither up and fall off naturally. If you look closely, you can see the slight scars that remain. Although, considering she plays one of 007's famously beautiful love interests in the upcoming pic, it's unlikely many will be looking at her hands when she's onscreen. Her polydactyly isn't the only thing Arterton is revealing, either. Click on through for Quantum spoilers.

I Hope Her Majesty Has Good Insurance

by Kasey McDonald April 24, 2008 4:15 pm
I Hope Her Majesty Has Good Insurance

In what has already been a bad week for the automotive stars of the new James Bond movie Quantum of Solace, it has just gotten a little bit worse. According to CNN, an experienced stuntman was seriously injured in a car crash while filming an action sequence in the same area of northern Italy where earlier this week a driver for Aston Martin lost control and dunked his auto into Garda Lake while en route to the 007 set. This time at least, mention of what happened to the driver came in the first sentence of the article. Sadly, he seems to be in much worse shape than the uninjured driver of the Aston Martin.

The Adventures of Tintin: Raiders of the Lost Unicorn

by Ethan Alter December 21, 2011 6:00 am
<i>The Adventures of Tintin</i>: Raiders of the Lost Unicorn

There's a clever gag early on in The Adventures of Tintin that effectively passes the baton from the title character's comic-book origins in the 1930s to his 21st century incarnation as the hero of a lavish animated blockbuster. In the scene, investigative journalist/globetrotting adventurer Tintin (played here by Jamie Bell via the magic of motion capture technology) is sitting with his back to the audience, having his picture drawn by a flea market street artist. The illustrator puts the finishing touches on the portrait and hands it over to his subject, saying proudly, "I think I've captured your likeness." With that, Tintin turns towards the camera and we see the character's past and present in the same frame. On the canvas is a sketch of Tintin as Belgian artist Hergé first drew him all those years ago. Next to that is the version of the character the animators at Weta Digital -- the New Zealand effects house operated by Peter Jackson, one of the primary creative forces behind this new movie, along with its director Steven Spielberg -- have come up with. While these two faces aren't precisely mirror images of each other, the mo-cap figure is still recognizably Tintin. In a single shot, the filmmakers convincingly lift this iconic character off the two-dimensional comics page and turn him into a walking, talking movie star.

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo: Rhymes With Schmoring

by Ethan Alter December 20, 2011 6:00 am
<i>The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo</i>: Rhymes With Schmoring

When it was first announced that David Fincher had signed on to helm an American version of Swedish author Stieg Larsson's absurdly popular crime thriller, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, my chief fear was that the resulting film would be Fincher's Ron Howard movie; i.e., a by-the-book adaptation of a bestseller (The Da Vinci Code, in Howard's case) that put profit first and artistry second. The other wrinkle Fincher faced (which Howard didn't) was that a perfectly serviceable (and quite faithful) film adaptation of Dragon Tattoo already existed -- a 2009 Swedish-language picture directed by Niels Arden Oplev and starring Noomi Rapace as the titular heroine, leather-clad, heavily-pierced hacker extraordinaire, Lisbeth Salander. So unless the Fight Club director was prepared to do some radical re-working of the novel -- thus pissing off its legions of fans -- it seemed as if his prodigious talents were going to be wasted on a project that would, at best, be a straightforward slice of pulp fiction or, at worse, a warmed-over rehash of too-familiar material.

David Fincher and His Cast Discuss <i>The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo</i>

David Fincher is (in)famous for his exacting directorial methods on set; stories abound about him putting his actors through multiple takes and working his crew hard to ensure that they get every shot absolutely right. Away from the camera, though, he seems laid back and comfortable, even up for cracking a joke or two (or three or four). While making the rounds for his latest film The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (which opens in theaters tomorrow), Fincher passed through New York and appeared at a press conference for the Sweden-set thriller, adapted from Stieg Larsson's best-selling book of the same time. He was joined by the movie's stars -- Daniel Craig as journalist Mikael Blomkvist and Rooney Mara as the titular hacker, Lisbeth Salander -- and two supporting players, Christopher Plummer and Stellan Skarsgård. Despite the movie's dark subject matter, all five were in fine spirits, cracking wise about everything from the movie's depiction of Sweden to a difficult stunt that literally left Craig gasping for air.

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