New SPECTRE television ad unveiled

The OFFICIAL JAMES BOND WEBSITE unveiled a new television spot for SPECTRE, the 24th James Bond film.

Much of the footage has been shown previously in movie trailers, but the spot is another sign that SPECTRE’s marketing is gearing up. The spot also went out on the official James Bond feed on Twitter.

Earlier in the day, the official set put ADDITIONAL SPECTRE ART.

007.com posts video blog about SPECTRE car chase

SPECTRE teaser poster

SPECTRE teaser poster

People who don’t want to know anything about the movie should stop reading now.

The official James Bond website, 007.com, posted a new video blog today which looks at a car chase scene in SPECTRE.

In the film, Daniel Craig’s James Bond is driving an Aston Martin DB10 and is being chased by a Jaguar driven by henchman Mr. Hinx (Dave Bautista).

The video includes comments from special effects man Chris Corbould and director Sam Mendes. The latter calls the sequence “a cat and mouse game through the night time streets of Rome.”

Here’s the video, it runs about 100 seconds. No real story spoilers, but, as stated above, the super-spoiler averse should not view.

UPDATE: To view a related tweet from the official 007 Twitter account, CLICK HERE.

Derek Watkins, 007 musician, dies

Derek Watkins

Derek Watkins

Derek Watkins, who frequently played trumpet on the scores of James Bond movies, has died, according to a series of Tweets by composer David Arnold.

DavidGArnold ‏@DavidGArnold
Very very sad news…the legend that was Derek Watkins,gentleman,musical genius and Trumpet on EVERY
Bond score has just passed away

DavidGArnold ‏@DavidGArnold
renowned as one of the finest Trumpet players in the world (LA session players often asked me about him) but he was mainly a lovely man

DavidGArnold ‏@DavidGArnold
He played on pretty much all of my scores and records….sublime playing,tasteful,supreme…and could hit notes others couldn’t get near

DavidGArnold ‏@DavidGArnold 4h
That will be a chair in the Trumpet section that will remain permanently empty….an irreplaceable musician and a down to earth,funny man

Arnold was composer on five James Bond movies, starting with Tomorrow Never Dies and running through Quantum of Solace. Watkins’s Web site has a long list of movie and TV credits.

UPDATE (March 23): Watkins, born in 1945, was just 17 when he played on Dr. No, beginning his long run performing on 007 scores. You can CLICK HERE to view his biography on his Web site.

UPDATE II (10:55 a.m., March 23): There is a Facebook page called DEREK WATKINS, THE TRUMPET LEGEND. It includes this post from his wife Wendy:

“A trumpet spreading a wondrous sound
Throughout the graves of all lands.
Will drive mankind before the Throne
Death and Nature shall be astonished”

It is with such sorrow that I have to tell you that my beloved husband died at 19.50 on 22 March. He was surrounded by his family telling him how much we loved him. His two year battle against cancer is over, he is at peace but we shall miss him so very much. His courage and strength over the past years have been an inspiration to everyone he met, and his music will live on for his future generations.

DEREK ROY WATKINS – 2 MARCH 1945 – 22 MARCH 2013

The HOME PAGE of Watkins’s official Web site now also has a tribute. Finally, some 007 Web sites have tried embedding one of the Skyfall videoblogs about the film’s music where Watkins is featured along with composer Thomas Newman. But those videos appear to have been blocked. But you can still see it by going to the VIDEOS PAGE of the official 007.com Web site.

UPDATE III (11:52 a.m.): The BBC’s Web page has an obituary you can view by CLICKING HERE. Meanwhile, other 007 bloggers inform us they’ve embedded versions of the 007.com video featuring Watkins works fine. So we’ll try to embed here:

Casino Royale finishes No. 1 in 007.com fan survey


Casino Royale was the “one clear worldwide winner” in a fan survey on the official 007.com Web page.

According to THE ANNOUNCEMENT, “The film came top of the poll in Australia, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, India, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States.”

The disclosure completes a cycle of fan surveys. Casino Royale was also the top vote getter in a survey ON THE MI6 JAMES BOND FAN WEB SITE while On Her Majesty’s Secret Service finished atop the survey by 007 MAGAZINE.

The 007.com and MI6 surveys were restricted to the 22 1962-2008 films made by Eon Proudctions. The 007 Magazine survey permitted fans to also consider Charles K. Feldman’s 1967 spoof version of Casino Royale and 1983’s Never Say Never Again, where Sean Connery reprised the Bond role in a competing 007 movie.

Harry Saltzman gets a little attention for 007’s 50th

Albert R. Broccoli and Harry Saltzman

Harry Saltzman, the co-founder of Eon Productions is starting to get a bit of attention as the 50th anniversary of the 007 movies approaches Oct. 5.

The official 007 Web page has an announcement Aug. 29 about “Global James Bond Day on the Oct. 5 anniversary date. It includes an image of Saltzman, Eon co-founder Albert R. Broccoli, Sean Connery and Bond author Ian Fleming. On Aug. 28, it was also announced there’d be a new documentary, Everything or Nothing, about the origins of the 007 films that also mentioned Saltzman prominently.

THAT PRESS RELEASE said the following:

EVERYTHING OR NOTHING focuses on three men with a shared dream – Bond producers Albert R. Broccoli, Harry Saltzman and author Ian Fleming. It’s the thrilling and inspiring narrative behind the longest running film franchise in cinema history which began in 1962. With unprecedented access both to the key players involved and to Eon Productions’ extensive archive, this is the first time the inside story of the franchise has ever been told on screen in this way.

Today, in Sony Pictures’s announcement about Global James Bond day, there was the same phrasing about “three men with a shared dream,” also mentioning Saltzman along with Broccoli and Fleming.

We’ve commented before about how Saltzman had been the forgotten man during the film 007’s golden anniversary year. So it’s good to see him get some attention.

Observations about Skyfall’s teaser poster

Skyfall’s teaser poster released May 17

Skyfall’s teaser poster was released May 17 on the official 007 Web site. Fans are debating whether they like it or not. Here are few observations:

James Bond walks into the gunbarrel: The poster plays a bit with the iconic James Bond gunbarrel logo as the Daniel Craig version of 007 walks “into” the gunbarrel. There’s a black “platform” that he appears to be walking on.

No tuxedo again:Craig/Bond wears a suit. Bond hasn’t worn a tuxedo in a poster since the main poster for 2006’s Casino Royale (albeit with an untied necktie). In this new version, Bond is wearing a neatly tied necktie. Bond wore a suit and tie in the second Quantum of Solace poster while having a suit without a tie in the final Quantum poster. Truth be told, the Bond tuxedo hasn’t been seen a lot in posters since 1987’s The Living Daylights. That tradition continues here.

Gunbarrel: classic or retro?: It looks closer to the Maurice Binder original than the more 3-D version that Daniel Kleinman created in Bond films from 1995 to 2002. But it’s hard to tell for sure.

No credits: There are no credits in this version. The final version, obviously, will have them. We raised the question in January whether director Sam Mendes will get a “vanity credit,” which no previous director has gotten in the series produced by Eon Productions. We guess the odds are against it (thought not as much as previously). The answer will come another day.

Meanwhile, the official Web site promises that the teaser trailer will debut there on Monday, May 21.

On 007’s 50th, will Harry Saltzman be the forgotten man?

This week, the official 007.com Web site added some new features, including this greeting from Michael G. Wilson, co-boss of Eon Productions:

At the 0:22 mark, Wilson says, “Cubby Broccoli made Dr. No, the first Bond film, in 1962.” Albert R. Broccoli did indeed produce the film with his then-partner Harry Saltzman. Now, Wilson is Broccoli’s stepson and our guess is this isn’t an intention dig at Saltzman, who exited the series in 1975 and died in 1994. It is, after all, a 45-second video, not a definitive history. But it may be a sign that in 2012, the year of the cinema Bond’s 50th anniverary, Saltzman may end up being overlooked.

When Saltzman’s name comes up today, the image is of a cranky, volatile man who almost axed the classic Goldfinger title song, ordered elephant shoes for a movie (The Man With the Golden Gun) that didn’t have any elephants in it, etc., etc. At least one film historian, Adrian Turner, took a different view in his 1998 book, Adrian Turner on Goldfinger.

“To begin with, Saltzman took the responsibility for the scripts” of the early 007 films, Turner wrote. “Having worked with John Osborne, it’s clear he thought that Richard Maibaum — Broccoli’s man — was little more than a hack.” Obviously, that’s hardly a unanimous opinion of Maibaum. Still, Maibaum is quoted on page 100 in author James Chapman’s 2000 book Licence to Thrill as saying that Saltzman did bring in U.K. screenwriter Paul Dehn to do the later drafts of Goldfinger (the notes section of the book says the quote is from page 285 of a book called Backstory.)

We only bring this up to show that Saltzman’s contributions extended beyond being an eccentric crank. The Broccoli-Saltzman partnership wasn’t an easy one. Eventually, the pair largely alternated producing the films while both were listed as producers. Saltzman primarily responsible for Live And Let Die (though Broccoli did visit the set in Louisiana and posed for a photograph with Saltzman and star Roger Moore) while The Man With the Golden Gun was Broccoli’s picture.

The Broccoli-Wilson clan, now headed by Michael Wilson and Barbara Broccoli, has supervised the 007 series since 1977’s The Spy Who Loved Me. Nobody is suggesting that Cubby Broccoli wasn’t a master showman, who deserves a lot of credit for launching Bond on the screen. Still, it would be a shame if Saltzman ends up being the forgotten man as fans look back on a half century of 007 films.

Also, here’s a shoutout to Dell Deaton, who blogs about James Bond watches. A tweet of his got us to thinking about all this.