My Celebrity Life

Inside James Bond audition: Casting director reveals how stars bag 007 roles before No Time To Die release

Daniel Craig is gearing up for his final outing as James Bond, as No Time To Die finally hits the cinema on September 30.

The 53-year-old has played Bond for the last 15 years, with the upcoming flick marking his fifth outing as 007.

There has been intense speculation on who will be taking over from Daniel as the superspy, with those involved with the franchise staying tight-lipped.

Speaking to, casting director Debbie McWilliams – who has been in charge of casting every Bond film since GoldenEye in 1995 – opened up about how the star-studded line-ups are shaped.

‘I start by reading the script several times to get underneath it and see what’s required, and then delve into the dark corners of my mind to see who inspires me, and who I think would be right,’ she began when asked how she goes about preparing for a Bond film. ‘Then if there aren’t any immediate, obvious solutions to that, then I go out and look for people.

‘That’s what’s been the great joy for me on the Bond films, particularly is that I’ve, over the years, been given carte blanche to go wherever I want to go. So if we’re filming in Germany, then I will go to Germany. And if I think that it’s a good idea to go to Paris to meet the leading ladies, then I go to Paris.

My Celebrity Life –

Daniel Craig is hanging up his tuxedo after No Time To Die is released on September 30 (Picture: MGM)

‘In fact, Paris has been one of our most fruitful casting areas. I’m always very open to suggestions, and I’m there and I’m available. We do meet lots and lots of people, but usually, it whittles down to two or three in the end for each role.’

Someone get us on the first Eurostar to Paris…

Debbie explained that every single person who makes it into the final cut of the film has been met by film bosses and seen ‘face to face’, no matter who they play.

But, when it comes down to the audition itself, they make sure to keep things totally under wraps – even down to the material that stars see beforehand.

My Celebrity Life –

Daniel took over as Bond after Pierce Brosnan left the role (Picture: MGM)

‘We’re all very discreet and we give nothing away, and we let nothing out of our hands,’ she continued. ‘The audition process is quite different from any other film that I work on, in that we never, ever, ever use the script that’s being shot.

‘We always use an old script and take scenes that are either similar, or will give an impression or an idea of how the person will perform. Just to give us an idea on screen of what they sound like, what they look like.

‘Particularly on this last one, I think a lot of people who worked on production didn’t even see a script. It’s kept close to our hearts.’

This was slightly different when it came down to Daniel replacing Pierce Brosnan in the main role, as Debbie revealed that producer Barbara Broccoli already had the Knives Out actor in mind – a decision that would ‘change the nature of the films’.

His debut came in Casino Royale, in 2006, and he went on to film Quantum of Solace, Skyfall and Spectre before announcing his decision to hang up his hat after filming No Time To Die.

A string of names have been tipped to replace him, including Idris Elba, Tom Hiddleston and James Norton, with intense speculation on who will step into the iconic tuxedo next.

While Debbie remained quiet over any names that have been mentioned in public, she has shared the type of person they are looking for next.

‘They have to be extremely charismatic, fit and prepared for their lives to change,’ she added. ‘It’s not everybody who wants that kind of stardom.

‘In fact, Daniel has very much steered himself away from any of that, and I think he’s done that very cleverly. He hasn’t sought the limelight, he’s just been happy to do the job.

‘I think that you need to have a certain modesty and know whose shoes you’re stepping into.

Is there anyone that fits that bill?

No Time To Die is released in cinemas on September 30.


Credit: Original article published here.

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