Random Thoughts: Fun Clips of the men who could be Bond

Photos courtesy of L.A. Times' Hero Complex Blog

Happy Friday everyone! This random rambling sparked by a recent article I read yesterday.

L.A. Times Hero Complex blog recently featured a post saying that screen legend Clint Eastwood was offered the role of both Superman AND James Bond. Whoever did the Photoshop work of Clint as both characters did a pretty darn good job, but I’d say the 80-year-old actor is wise for turning them down. I mean, I just can’t see him in those roles, and Mr. Eastwood himself said, “‘Superman? Nah, nah, that’s not for me.’ Not that there’s anything wrong with it. It’s for somebody, but not me.”

Apparently Eastwood share the same lawyer as the Bond producers the Broccolis, who said that they would love to have him. In response, he said, “… to me, well, that was somebody else’s gig. That’s Sean’s deal. It didn’t feel right for me to be doing it.” That’s right, Clint. For me—and most people would agree–the role of Bond belongs to the Brits. Ok, so I did suggest New Zealander Karl Urban for Bond not too long ago, and someone already deemed it sacrilegious! 🙂

In any case, I thought it’d be fun to post a few clips of three British actors whom I can see as Bond. I’m not campaigning for them to nab the role, mind you, the first two obviously have an established career playing diverse characters that I’d rather have them continue in that direction. I just think they’d be perfectly suitable in these roles, had they been offered the part.

Christian Bale
This is such a well-mixed video that I could literally watch this over and over again. The music is perfect and whoever did this picked the right clips to go with it. The clips are from my guilty pleasure action sci-fi Equilibrium, Nolan’s Batman flicks and the batty crime-thriller American Psycho. As long as they don’t cast Katie Holmes as Bond girl, I’d watch Bale as the suave super spy!

Clive Owen
I’ve talked about how fitting Clive would be as Bond, but as I said previously, the point is moot really as the guy himself never desired it. Oh well, that’s what fan-made videos are for, right? It’s not as well-made as the Bale one, but obviously Clive gets the bad ass car chase thing down pat.

Henry Cavill
Now, this one still might be possible down the road, as the 27-year-old was actually considered for the role  and he even made it to the final screen test. The producers deemed he was too young, well obviously! I mean, I don’t know how they have such a range from the boyish-faced Henry to the craggy and hard-edged Daniel Craig in the same audition. Check out this clearly Bond-inspired Dunhill commercial, I’d say give the guy 5 years or so and I think he ought to be shortlisted as a contender once again.

Well, what do you think of these guys as Bond? Or maybe you have your own ideas who would be good as 007, so do share.

Chat-Worthy Actor: Clive Owen

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This past Monday, IMDb homepage featured Clive on its actor spotlight section. As he ranks pretty high up there in my favorite actors list, I thought I’d put him on the spotlight here, too. The dashing Brit is one of those actors who despite a few lousy flicks (i.e. the preposterous Shoot ‘Em Up and the dull Duplicity), still comes out practically unscathed. IMDb’s description of him is quite fitting: Whether performing Shakespeare, driving a speeding BMW, or holding his own against mega-stars, Clive Owen has established himself as one of the most versatile actors in theater, television, and film.

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Looking at his filmography, he’s got some great movies under his belt. Children of Men is destined to be a classic sci-fi drama, which remains my favorite role from the tall Brit. I also enjoyed his performance in Inside Man, King Arthur, Beyond Borders, Gosford Park, Elizabeth: The Golden Age and The International. I even enjoyed his brief appearance in the first Bourne film, Bourne Identity. Though his attempt at comedy in Greenfingers didn’t fare as well as his action/dramatic ones. His latest movie The Boys Are Back shows his tender side as a single parent raising two young boys (check out my review). He also played a dad alongside Catherine Keener in the David Schwimmer-directed indie Trust.

The first time I saw Clive might’ve been in those BMW short films The Hire, which I thought is a pretty shrewd marketing campaign that truly flaunt those coveted German automobiles. This series of eight short films (which you can watch on youtube) was released online back in 2001, featuring popular filmmakers such as John Frankenheimer, Ang Lee, Wong Kar-Wai, etc., and starring Clive as the “Driver.” Sure Jason Statham is cool in The Transporter, but Clive adds a dose of sophistication and class to his ‘cool factor.’ Despite his nonchalant demeanor, he projects a certain brand of pathos with his soulful eyes that I find incredibly attractive.

All that always brings me to this theory: Clive would make a terrific James Bond. Whenever I watched him in action flicks (and there are quite a lot of ’em) or even the way he talks with that deep, raspy voice (always a plus!), I kept thinking how Clive would’ve fit that 007 role like a glove. He not only looks the part (tall, dark and British), he somehow epitomizes what I think the text book super spy ‘model’ is supposed to be. Ok, I know, I know, it’s really a moot point now as the actor himself don’t even want the job. He did do a parody of Bond in The Pink Panther though, which I thought is pretty amusing. On his IMDb trivia, he’s quoted as saying: “Bond was the best thing that never happened to me. I was never in the running but the more I said so, the more people thought I had it in the bag. What’s so funny about it all is my career in Britain was in really bad shape at the time, but my agents pretty much built me a new one in America by playing up all the Bond stories. All I had to do was keep on telling people I was never going to be Bond. I’d like to think I made it on talent, but it’s really just dumb luck. If I hadn’t worn that tux in Croupier, I’d still be begging for the parts Robson Green turned down on cop shows.”

Oh well, at least we have those BMW films to watch Clive looking very Bond-like and wish I could take a ride with him in those ultimate driving machines… well, then again maybe not. Just take a peek at this one called Star and you’ll know what I mean. Directed by Guy Ritchie and starring his own ex-missus Madonna, I bet he’d get a kick out of this one even more now.

Now, this action-packed one called Ticker with Don Cheadle and Ray Liotta is also worth checking out, it’s easily my favorite one of the series:


Updated 10/3:

I hope to see Clive in leading roles again as he’s more versatile than Hollywood gives him credit for. Now that I’ve seen a bit more of his work, I can say that I like him in dramatic roles as much as his more action-packed roles. So here are my top five favorite Clive Owen roles so far:

  • Theo Faron – Children of Men
  • Mac – Shadow Dancer
  • Louis Salinger – The International
  • Sir Walter Raleigh – Elizabeth: The Golden Age
  • Joe Warr – The Boys Are Back

Are you a fan of Clive? What’s your favorite Clive Owen movie(s)?