It’s been nearly four years since James Bond was seen in movie theaters, but he’ll be back in a big way with this November’s Skyfall, which will also help to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Ian Fleming’s classic British spy gracing the big screen. Perhaps due to that lengthy gap, or simply to keep the hype for Skyfall building, the people behind the film have consistently distributed different forms of media – most notably a series of video blogs – to help keep fans satisfied until 007’s next mission gets under way.
That trend has continued recently, as an Olympic TV spot and brand new trailers were unveiled, and today we’re getting some new material dedicated to what happens behind-the-scenes, in the form of a preview of photographer Greg Williams’ new book, entitled, SKYFALL: BOND ON SET.
The book is essentially a collection of images from the set, featuring some unique and candid shots of the principal players (both actors and members of the crew) associated with the film. check them out below:
Williams has produced similar works for the previous three Bond movies (Die Another Day, Casino Royale, and Quantum of Solace); in addition to unveiling a handful of images from the book, he spoke at length with the official James Bond website, touching on things like what his actual job is and which scenes were the most difficult to shoot. Head over to 007.com for the full interview, but here are some excerpts:
On how his job differs from that of the unit photographer:
“I’ve worked on over 100 feature films, and I shoot what’s called “the specials” where I go in for a few days and shoot coverage for the press, as opposed to the Unit Photographer who’s there all the time. The Unit Photographer also shoots stills from the scenes that actually go into the movie – my pictures are more behind-the-scenes.”
In his opinion, what the most exciting day on set consisted of:
“The day they did the London Underground crash was awe-inspiring. The craftsmanship in that stunt is incredible. They had this camera that could shoot the train coming towards it and then if it was going to keep going they had an emergency release that could yank the camera out of the way. I think the train stopped four inches before the concrete wall so to have this enormous thing and to get it to stop in the right spot was quite amazing. No one was allowed to be inside the tunnel so my cameras were on remotes for those shots. We were in the stairwell watching it on TV screens firing off the camera remotely. With my shots you see bricks flying towards the camera and I’m sure they were bouncing off of the camera too. I used my cheaper camera for that one.”
Projects like these are typically pretty interesting because they provide yet another way to examine a film and it can be genuinely enjoyable to rifle through the photos and see the actors and other people involved with preparing for and executing their respective jobs. For example, the shot of Daniel Craig taking his own photo of Williams taking a photo of him is fun (Williams talks about that picture in the interview), and while it and some others might not shed any important light on Skyfall, they’re still a unique look into seeing these actors prepare to play some of our favorite characters.
On a quick personal note, I’m a big fan of the cover art, with a black-and-white Daniel Craig standing in front of the classic Aston Martin DB5, holding a pretty formidable-looking double-barreled shotgun in his right hand. It really embodies Craig’s iteration of the character, as a quality mix of charisma, brutal force, and serious style.
SKYFALL: BOND ON SET will be on shelves in the United States beginning October 1, and Skyfall lands in theaters on November 9.