Though the next James Bond movie – Spectre – has already had a few controversies regarding its budget and a leaked draft of the script, there’s no doubt it’s still one of the most highly-anticipated movies of the year. That’s especially impressive considering all the other blockbusters coming out in 2015 (The Avengers 2, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, The Hunger Games finale, Jurassic World, and more). But then again, this is the sequel to the critically-acclaimed, billion-dollar box office smash that was Skyfall; anticipation was always going to be high.

Spectre will see the return of Academy Award-winning director Sam Mendes and actors Daniel Craig, Ralph Fiennes (as M), Ben Whishaw (as Q), Naomie Harris (as Moneypenny), as well as newcomers Christoph Waltz, Dave Bautista, Léa Seydoux, Andrew Scott, and Monica Bellucci. The film will see Bond “on a trail to uncover a sinister organization” – the titular bad guys – which may or may not have something to do with Quantum from Quantum of Solace.

Screen Rant is currently on location in Mexico City, and – along with a select group of journalists – we had the opportunity to to see what was described as “a pivotal action scene” being filmed. But first, check out the newly released trailer:

TRAILER

 

SET VISIT

James Bond movies are known for a number of hallmarks, some of which you can see in pretty much every installment (the opening action sequence, the visual montage over the opening credits, the super cool car, the Bond villain, the Bond girl, the Bond song, et cetera) and others that just occasionally show up (the massive brute henchman in the vein of Oddjob or Jaws, the ski chase, the gadgets, et cetera).

Daniel Craig as James Bond on the Set of SPECTRE 1024x682 Spectre Set Visit Report: The Opening Action Sequence Revealed


We saw what will eventually become the opening action sequence from Spectre, which takes place during the Day of the Dead parade in Mexico City. Though we didn’t get to see everything – we watched part of it from the balcony of the Gran Hotel De La Ciudad De Mexico – we were given a breakdown of what to expect from the unit publicist.

[WARNING: MILD SPOILERS BEYOND THIS POINT]

The scene begins with James Bond (Craig) and Estrella (Stephanie Sigman) walking along the parade before making their way to the Hotel Ciudad (Eon Productions previously filmed here for Licence to Kill) and Estrella’s hotel room.

Bond, as he is wont to do, has basically convinced Estrella that he’s way into her, so she’s under the impression that they’re going back to her room to get down to business. (Not actual business, you understand – metaphorical business.)

Sam Mendes on the Set of SPECTRE 1024x682 Spectre Set Visit Report: The Opening Action Sequence Revealed

Director Sam Mendes on the set of ‘Spectre.’


In actuality, Bond is just using her for her room, which has a unique vantage point to another room across the way, where two very bad men (one, an assassin named Sciarra, played by Alessandro Cremona) are about to do very bad things.

According to the unit publicist:

“[Bond] stops something really bad from happening, kills [the nameless bad guy], the other guy [Sciarra] goes running, Bond jumps out of the window and there’s a bit of a chase, he causes a building to explode and they both end up – boom – on the ground, and the foot chase starts.”

The next part of the sequence – where Bond chases Sciarra through the Day of the Dead parade – is what we watched. Mid-chase, Sciarra calls in his bad guy buddies, who land a helicopter in the Plaza de la Constitución – it’s sort of the main plaza of Mexico City and the end point of the parade. Sciarra, who’s bleeding profusely and clearly disoriented, gets to the helicopter, but Bond manages to jump on before it can take off. He throws one of the bad guys out and a fight ensues between him and Sciarra.

Spectre Day of the Dead Parade James Bond 1024x682 Spectre Set Visit Report: The Opening Action Sequence Revealed


We didn’t get to see that part of the shoot, but we were told that a stunt pilot named Chuck Aaron had been hired to do the flying. Apparently, he’s the only man alive who can fly 360s in a helicopter, so expect some helicopter 360s in the final cut of the film.

The sequence will supposedly last about 15 minutes (maybe less). It’s unclear how connected it will be to the main thrust of the film – some Bond opening sequences are, many aren’t – but I have a feeling there will be some throughline. Presumably, Monica Bellucci’s character (Lucia Sciarra) is somehow related to the Sciarra from the opening sequence. If you’ve seen the trailer, you know there’s a scene where she’s at a funeral looking very much like a widow, so I wouldn’t get too attached to the assassin from the opening scene if I were you.

What say you, Screen Ranters? Does this all sound good? Are you looking forward to the 24th James Bond film? Drop us a line in the comments.

Spectre hits theaters November 6th, 2015.