The macho past of James Bond: “He can be sexist as long as his environment indicates it”

On the Daniel Craig stage, women have had a bigger push, but what do we do with the more misogynistic scenes from previous installments? We talked about the cancellation with the cast of ‘No time to die’.

The last chapter of Daniel Craig as James Bond arrives in No time to die. Behind him, 15 years where the character has reinvented himself into an action hero haunted by his past. The change has also occurred in its environment, since the saga has been incorporating female characters that have helped transform that misogynistic and sexist agent that was decades ago. Evolution, therefore, is remarkable, but it is impossible not to look back to see what it was like in its origins.

Recently, the director of the latest installment Cary Fukunaga was talking about a scene from Operation Thunder, where Sean Connery’s Bond was kissing a nurse who was doing a medical examination without permission. Almost 60 years have passed since that premiere, should we cancel it or put it in context and accept that it is a thing of our past? In an interview with Fukunaga for SensaCine, the director has stated that he disagrees with the cancellation.

I do not agree to cancel them. I think the great thing about this franchise is how it has changed over the years, how it has been able to survive, develop and progress and always reflect the era in which it is set.

The director points out that it has evolved in recent years thanks, especially, to the work of Barbara Broccoli, the producer, and the introduction of characters like Judi Dench’s M, who have brought fantastic scenes to the saga. “It really was a challenge. Sat down Pierce Brosnan in his office and said, ‘You are a misogynistic dinosaur and a Cold War relic.’ Since then, the character has struggled for relevance in an elegant way and I think Daniel Craig has really done it in his movies, “he says.

Craig has been saying for years that Agent 007’s teammates should have the same qualities as him. First of all, because complex female characters are needed. Second, because only by modifying the environment can the protagonist be changed. “I maintain that female characters in Bond should be complex, flawed, interesting … All the things that James Bond is because then you have a balance and something close to reality. You have drama, you have something that is rich and that can be seen, “he declared in an interview with SensaCine.

Bond can be sexist, okay, I mean, it’s not okay for someone to be sexist, but he can be as long as everyone around him points out that he is. You can’t walk away from difficult characters, it’s about all parties, especially women, being equal to him

On No time to die, several interesting female characters arrive. One of them is Nomi, the new agent 007 played by Lashana Lynch. “She uses her inner strength and wisdom to reach Bond’s brain in a way that no other Agent 00 has ever done before. I think Nomi has found all the buttons she could push when she has known him for years on paper. When she finally meets him, she is able to push those buttons“, the actress tells SensaCine.

Part of that credit goes to Phoebe Waller-Bridge, the creator of Fleabag and one of the most groundbreaking voices in the industry in recent years. Here he is part of the writing team and, according to Fukunaga, he has brought great value. “I think Phoebe is a hyper intelligent screenwriter and a very insightful observer, also very good at dramaturgy, understanding the needs of each character in a scene and how to elevate that to have the most interesting dynamics in the scene. It was very curious to talk to with she about the characters we had, the situations, how we could boost them or add some layers to be able to squeeze the most we could out of each moment“, comments the director.

No time to die premieres in Spanish cinemas on October 1.

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