Posted by: 4pack | November 11, 2008

Daniel Craig Reveals Incredible Modesty In Interview

danielcraig‘How’s it feel being sort of looked at as being sexy?’ And I’m going, ‘I have no idea what you’re talking about.’ That sounds like false humility, but it’s not. Anybody who starts to think they’re sexy immediately becomes unsexy.” 

danielcraig2“He is able to show the chinks in the armor, and that makes the character stronger. There’s a tension within him, that the way Daniel plays him, you don’t think he’s going to snap, but you know he’s going to bend.” 

http://www.usatoday.com/life/movies/news/2008-11-06-craig-bond_N.htm

For all the exposure 007 has given Craig, his own life remains a kind of secret identity.

He has been divorced since 1994 and has a teenage daughter from that marriage, but he doesn’t like to discuss her. (“I’ve spent my whole career protecting her,” he says. “As soon as I talk about it, that’s out there.”)

He has been in a relationship with film producer Satsuki Mitchell for several years, and was dogged during Quantum production by rumors of an engagement. His standard answer: He’s not a member of the Royal Family, and therefore owes the public no confirmation or denial.

Craig does say this: He tends to see flaws in his Bond work, but Mitchell is still impressed. “I’m looking at myself and say, ‘I got away with that … I didn’t get away with that … I kinda got away with that.’ My girlfriend is more than forgiving,” he says with a laugh.

In contrast to his brooding Bond, Craig is animated and prone to jokes in person. He is hesitant to talk about his past, but gradually opens up when talking about how his early experiences help shape his most famous character.

He grew up in Wirral, along the northwestern English coast outside Liverpool, a working-class area that was hit with economic troubles during his youth in the ’80s. “I had a fairly relatively normal background. My parents are divorced, but that’s hardly unusual,” he says. “I was brought up by my mother and got into acting very early on, inspired by the fact that there’s a fantastic art scene in Liverpool, good directors and great writers. That had an indelible impact on me.”

Craig had family friends who worked in theater and would let him watch stage shows from behind the scenes. “The truth of it is, I watched these plays, some of which were way beyond me as a kid. … I could sit backstage and watch all the mechanics and all these people. These big, larger-than-life people would get up on stage and shout and emote and do all these things … and then they’d go get drunk in the bar afterward — which was probably the biggest draw to me,” he says with a laugh. ” ‘Ahh, you can do this and enjoy yourself as well!’ “

School was more of a struggle. “I didn’t have an academic persuasion at all,” he says. “I was wandering slightly, as every teenager does, and my mother gave me a gentle nudge, and said, ‘Go and do it, try and have a go.’ ” He left home at 16 to work in London theater.

Like Bond, his adult life has been consumed by his job. He was a low-profile working actor until Bond came along, a dependable performer in big-budget movies such as Lara Croft: Tomb Raider and more serious fare such as Steven Spielberg’s Munich.

007 made him a household name, but initially even he resisted. His first meeting with Eon Productions’ Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson, whose family has overseen the Bond films since Sean Connery in the 1962 original Dr. No, is one Craig describes as “a failure.”

“I turned around and said ‘Thank you very much, but no,’ ” he says. “They joke about it now, but I genuinely was like, ‘This is not even on my radar.’ I never even considered in my professional life that I should play James Bond. All the reasons people thought I shouldn’t play it, I thought too. It’s like, I’m blond. Why would you?”

They eventually won him over with Casino Royale‘s darker, more emotional take on the character, and he has since pushed to go even further: Quantum has an art-house-heavy roster of talent for a $230 million action film.

It was directed by Marc Forster, known for intimate dramas such as Finding Neverland and Monster’s Ball. Paul Haggis, Oscar-winning writer-director of Crash, co-wrote both of Craig’s Bond movies. And the villain this time, a faux-eco entrepreneur named Dominic Greene, is played by French star Mathieu Amalric, who played the paralyzed writer in last year’s The Diving Bell and the Butterfly.

It’s a team with unusual integrity for a special-effects-heavy popcorn movie. “Cinematic integrity is not bad,” he says, then cracks: “It’s debatable where the moral line is there, though.”

Craig’s defining characteristic as Bond is his toughness, not just physically but also emotionally.

“Bond doesn’t verbalize a lot of what’s going on, so it’s a challenging role,” says Broccoli. “He is able to show the chinks in the armor, and that makes the character stronger. There’s a tension within him, that the way Daniel plays him, you don’t think he’s going to snap, but you know he’s going to bend.”

Craig says he would have played the character differently when he was younger.

“The older I’ve gotten, the more I’ve understood what being hard is about, or being tough. It’s less about fighting and physicality,” he says. “The strongest people I know are women and not-huge men, let’s put it that way. The strongest people have been the ones who genuinely have got it inside. If you don’t have it inside, you’re weak.”

So how does Craig define toughness?

“I wish I knew,” he says. “I fight to find out. I spend my life trying to be strong. As a man, you have to look after your family. Having good people around you and looking after them, it’s that strength you draw from as well.

“Barroom brawls?” He shrugs. “I’ve done maybe two or three, and I’ve never been particularly successful at them. They’re always very quick, and then suddenly you’re outside and you don’t know quite how you got there.”

When he was first considering the Bond role, he says: “I never considered myself particularly tough. I had played rugby as a kid and played lots of contact sports and done all that. I’m never afraid of throwing myself around,” he says (the arm sling serving as testament). “But when I came to do this, I knew Bond was tough. But it’s the other stuff that’s more interesting, that’s worth playing around with and having a look at. That was my approach, but I nicked it from Ian Fleming, who wrote it on the page. He wrote this guy who was tough, hard, but (messed) up.”

He has a similar counterintuitive approach to the character’s sex appeal, hewn from the fact that many actors agree that one bonus of the business is the ability to attract.

“You get into acting for the chase. It’s dressing up and showing off. Let’s be honest about it, at it’s basic level,” he says, laughing. “But it’s when you start believing in all that, you’re in deep trouble. People talk to me about ‘How’s it feel being sort of looked at as being sexy?’ And I’m going, ‘I have no idea what you’re talking about.’ That sounds like false humility, but it’s not. Anybody who starts to think they’re sexy immediately becomes unsexy.”

It’s far from over for this busy actor. His Holocaust resistance drama Defiance opens Dec. 31; he plays a Lithuanian Jew who leads rebels on a guerrilla war against the Nazis rather than go to a concentration camp.

It was another demanding, intense role; Craig isn’t one to toss off a less intense part. That’s something he picked up from a late actor who worked with him on 2002’s Road to Perdition.

“The best thing I can say about Paul Newman was he worried about his craft and worried about what he was doing. He talked it through, and when he got it right it pleased him and when he got it wrong it really (ticked) him off,” Craig says. “I thought, ‘You’re in your 70s, this is the twilight of your career; other people would be sitting back and saying, “I’ll show up, say the lines and take the check.” ‘

“But no, it absolutely meant as much to him then as it had always meant. I thought, ‘God, if you’re still getting a thrill out of your job, still getting that much out of your profession at that age, that can’t be a bad thing. You’ve probably got to work toward that, make yourself feel that.”

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Categories

%d bloggers like this: