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Clint Eastwood

How Bond Movies Would Be Different If Clint Eastwood Played 007

Clint Eastwood revealed that he was once offered the role of 007 in the James Bond movies but turned it down. Eastwood is best known for playing “Dirty” Harry Callahan across five movies, and as the Man with no Name in Sergio Leone’s Dollars trilogy. James Bond is just one of the many pop-culture figures offered to the actor during his career, including both Superman and Batman. Yet, considering his impressive CV, it’s the Bond connection that is probably the most intriguing.

Given Eastwood’s previous roles it would have been interesting to see how casting the actor would change James Bond. Created in 1953 by author and former British intelligence officer Ian Fleming, Bond first appeared in the novel Casino Royale. Since the publication of this debut novel, Fleming went on to write twelve further Bond novels and two short-story collections featuring the British spy with a license to kill. The novels and the character have been adapted into radio serials, a 1950s American TV movie, and a 26-strong feature film franchise, many of which seemingly lend themselves to Eastwood’s signature style.

Aside from Australian actor George Lazenby, the casting of James Bond has primarily favored actors from across the British Isles. Sean Connery was Scottish, Roger Moore was born in England, Timothy Dalton is Welsh, and Irish actor Pierce Brosnan preceded Daniel Craig, another Englishman. The character is therefore a British institution, and there’s often controversy whenever there’s a question of looking elsewhere for the next Bond actor. As an American, Clint Eastwood would have been a radical departure for the franchise. However, his unique screen persona would have, strangely, suited the character more than many previous role incumbents. His grit, charm, and natural swagger mean that, in an alternate universe, Eastwood may well have made a great Bond. Here’s how he could have transformed the role.

When Clint Eastwood Could’ve Played James Bond

During the making of his fifth James Bond movie, You Only Live Twice, Sean Connery had grown tired of the role. When he was denied a pay increase by producer Albert “Cubby” Brocolli, Connery declined to return for the next entry in the franchise. With Connery gone, EON Productions began casting for the next 007, a process that would eventually lead them to George Lazenby. It was during this casting process in the late-1960s that EON’s attention turned to American actors such as Burt Reynolds and Clint Eastwood. At this point, Eastwood was best known for his roles in Sergio Leone’s trilogy of Western movies.

Would Clint Eastwood Have Been A Good James Bond Actor?

James Bond is a privately educated Englishman, who had lived in Canterbury, England, and studied at Eton College, before transferring to Fettes in Edinburgh, Scotland. While a lack of an English accent was no issue for Edinburgh-born Sean Connery, whose iconic performance eventually influenced Fleming’s later novels, introducing Bond’s Scottish ancestors. Clint Eastwood’s western drawl isn’t an obvious fit for the character of Bond and feels more suitable for a grittier version of Bond’s CIA colleague Felix Leiter.

However, the role that Eastwood was best known for at this particular point in his career does suggest his ability to portray particular aspects of the character. Having lost his parents at a young age, Bond has abandonment issues, which lead to his inability to form lasting relationships. He’s a loner, much like Eastwood’s Man with no Name, who over the course of Leone’s trilogy retrieved buried gold, tracked down and eliminated the villainous El Indio, and brought peace to the town of San Miguel. Like Bond, he also cuts a recognizable silhouette – the poncho, brown hat, cigarillo, and marksmanship being a rough and ready frontier version of Bond’s tuxedo, Martini, cigarettes, and proficiency with a Walther PPK. It’s therefore easy to see how the Bond producers saw how Eastwood’s lone-wolf Western hero could be translated into Fleming’s iconic secret agent.

How Clint Eastwood’s James Bond Would Be Very Different

Daniel Craig’s portrayal of James Bond heightened the brutal nature of 007’s role as Her Majesty’s Government’s “blunt instrument.” In a post-9/11, post-Jason Bourne world, Craig’s take on the James Bond character was seen as a vital modernization of the character. Daniel Craig’s 007 recalled Timothy Dalton, who also gravitated toward Bond’s darker side in his portrayal of the character. If Eastwood had been cast in the late 1960s, then this darker, more brutal version of the character would have debuted much earlier. Clint Eastwood’s first Bond movie would have been On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, which features a plot that involves ski chases, hypnotism, and various women throwing themselves at Bond. It’s hard to see quite how Eastwood’s stoic cowboy persona would have fit into the movie.

However, the moment at the start when Bond saves Tracy from drowning after she attempts to take her own life would take on greater, grittier urgency with Eastwood in the role. It would also hint at the dark tone of the movie’s closing moments when Bond’s new wife Tracy is gunned down by Blofeld and Irma Bunt on the Bonds’ wedding day. Clint Eastwood’s James Bond would have brought a darker, brooding intensity to the movie’s heartbreaking conclusion. Where Lazenby plays Tracy’s murder with a shocked detachment, Eastwood would be hinting at the violent reprisals to come when “James Bond will return…” in the next movie. Like Craig, Eastwood’s Bond would likely have more of a narrative throughline, which would have fundamentally changed the seventh Bond movie Diamonds Are Forever.

What Eastwood’s 007 Would’ve Meant For Future James Bond Movies

When George Lazenby departed after only one outing as 007 out of fear of type-casting, Sean Connery returned to the role once more for Diamonds Are Forever. This shift in casting is why Bond’s revenge against Blofeld and Bunt is hastily abandoned after a bizarre pre-titles sequence that sees Bond “kill” Blofeld. Tracy’s death is not mentioned explicitly, and Bunt never appears again, due to the studio moving in a different direction once Connery returned. Had Eastwood been cast in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service and accepted the contract that Lazenby declined, it’s likely that Bond’s revenge mission would have been a far more substantial part of Diamonds Are Forever.

The continuity in actors would have allowed for a more emotionally satisfying continuation of Bond’s story than the one in Connery’s final Bond movie. Aside from the opening up of Bond’s casting to the world outside the UK, Eastwood’s casting would have changed the trajectory of the 007 movies going forward. Prior to On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, the Bond movies had generally been standalone adventures with recurring elements, the only throughline being 007’s continued clashes with SPECTRE. The character of Bond didn’t change, he was never visibly affected by the emotional or physical toll of his missions, barring a visit to a spa at the opening of Thunderball. Eastwood’s casting would have changed this, and having this grizzled actor play a more stoic and vengeful Bond would have seamlessly shepherded the James Bond franchise into the murkier morality of the 1970s and New Hollywood.

Why Clint Eastwood Turned Down James Bond

Talking about the offer of James Bond, Eastwood said that the studio was keen to have him and he was offered a considerable amount of money to play the part. However, the actor felt uncomfortable about donning Sean Connery’s tuxedo and passed up the opportunity. He explained that he thought it was a role that, after five movies, belonged to Sean Connery and that it wasn’t right for Eastwood to take it on.

Without Clint Eastwood as James Bond in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, the 1970s saw the franchise go in a different direction. Rather than deal in complex anti-heroes like those played by Eastwood, Roger Moore’s Bond movies instead cashed in on other 1970s cinematic trends like Blaxploitation in Live and Let Die and Star Wars in Moonraker. Roger Moore was Connery’s eventual successor, playing Bond for seven films over 12 years, lasting far longer than George Lazenby and even Sean Connery himself. Today, many of these movies are celebrated parts of James Bond lore. However, there’s no doubt that the series could have taken a radically different direction with Clint Eastwood involved.

Clint Eastwood

2 of Clint Eastwood’s Most Famous Oscar-Winning Films Were Turned Down By Major Studios in Favor of Over-Cooked Formulaic Blockbusters

Clint Eastwood has proven time and time again throughout his almost seven-decade-old and counting career that he is not just an incredible actor, but one of the most exceptionally remarkable filmmakers as well. His big-screen works like Dirty Harry and Gran Torino are the living proof of his legendary legacy that he is currently carrying forward.
Clint Eastwood in a still from The Mule

Clint Eastwood in a still from The Mule
But the true potential of his spectacular works wasn’t always visible to the production companies and studios, a major reason behind this was the ‘over-cooked formulaic’ blockbusters that most of the major studios were in favor of. In fact, two of Eastwood’s super famous and Oscar-winning films to date, Million Dollar Baby and Mystic River, were almost engulfed in these flames and never made!
Clint Eastwood’s Million Dollar Baby and Mystic River Were Almost Never Made
A still from Mystic River (2003)A still from Mystic River (2003)
Although Clint Eastwood has given the entertainment industry some of the best works of all time, many in the industry once failed to recognize his true filmmaking potential – something that put the existence of two of his blockbusters, Million Dollar Baby and Mystic River, in danger.
As revealed by him in an interview shared by The Clint Eastwood Archive, the actor shared how initially major studios failed to realize the true potential of Million Dollar Baby and Mystic River. He said:
“I liked the Million Dollar Baby script a lot,” he said. “Warner Bros. said the project had been submitted to them and they’d passed on it. I said, ‘But I like it.’ They said, ‘Well, it’s a boxing movie.’ And I said, ‘It’s not a boxing movie in my opinion. It’s a father-daughter love story, and it’s a lot of other things besides a boxing movie.’”
Continuing, he let out how little the studios were willing to help him financially for the film.
“They hemmed and hawed and finally said that if I wanted to take it, maybe they’d pay for the domestic rights only. After that, I’d be on my own.”
Since that obviously wasn’t a good enough price, Eastwood found himself out on search once again.
“We took it to a couple of other studios, and they turned it down, much like Mystic River was turned down — the exact same pattern. People who kept calling and saying, ‘Come on, work with us on stuff.’ I’d give it to them, and they’d go, ‘Uh, we were thinking more in terms of Dirty Harry coming out of retirement.’ And who knows? Maybe when it comes out they’ll be proven right.”
Just like that, because of over-cooked formulaic blockbusters like Dirty Harry, two of Clint Eastwood’s most famous Oscar-winning movies were turned down by major studios.
How Million Dollar Baby and Mystic River Came To Be
A still from Million Dollar Baby (2004)A still from Million Dollar Baby (2004)
In another interview (via East Bay Times), Clint Eastwood shared insights into his decisions for making the “bleak and the bleaker”: Mystic River and Million Dollar Baby, and how the films came to be.
“At this particular time in my life, I’m not doing anything as a moneymaker,” Eastwood said. “It’s like I’m pushing the envelope the other way to see how far we can go to be noncommercial.”
The filmmaker then let out what helped him get away with making both of the movies:
“I didn’t know if ‘Mystic River’ would go over at all… But I just told Warners the same thing I did with ‘Million Dollar Baby’: ‘I don’t know if this is going to make any money. But I think I can make a picture that you’d be proud to have in your library.’”
That statement most certainly seemed to work as both Million Dollar Baby and Mystic River earned the approval of the studios and went on to do wonders on the big screens as well as on the audience’s hearts—even ending up garnering numerous Oscar nominations and wins to add up to Clint Eastwood‘s star-studded collection!

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Clint Eastwood

Shyam Benegal: ‘You Don’t Have To Give The Audience What They Want; You Have To Create Something New…”

Circa 50 years ago, Shyam Benegal was in the vanguard of the offbeat cinema movement with path-breaking 1970s films such as Ankur (Shabana Azmi, Anant Nag), Nishant (Girish Karnad, Shabana Azmi, Naseeruddin Shah), Manthan (Smita Patil, Girish Karnad) and Bhumika (Smita Patil, Amol Palekar). Benegal’s filmmaking, though, started even earlier. He reminds us, “My career didn’t start with feature films. I have made several documentaries before and since that were very satisfying too.” And of course he went on to helm the seminal TV show Bharat Ek Khoj.In his late 80s now, Benegal is still in the thick of things. Mention his latest film, Mujib: The Making Of A Nation, and he quips, “That has been completed and released.” He is immersed in the present, where the current mood of cinema, especially OTT, is in alignment with the temperament of this forward-thinking filmmaker.
Excerpts from the interview
It is amazing that filmmakers like Clint Eastwood, Martin Scorcese and you continue to make films even after crossing 80. Would you say the creative impulse is as strong even now as it was 50 years ago when you made Ankur?
I am 89 years old now, and Clint Eastwood is 93. The fact that Clint Eastwood continues to make films at his age inspires me too. The creative urge is still strong within me. I’m a filmmaker and I am still driven by the desire to make films. And that is why I still make cinema. I haven’t been well over the last few years … it comes with old age (said dryly). I have to undergo dialysis almost every second day. But, despite all that, I can’t retire.

Zubeidaa |

Your latest film Mujib: The Making Of A Nation has just been released. What gripped you about the subject?
He is the man who paved the way for the creation of Bangladesh. I found his story intriguing and I think it made for interesting cinema.
Ankur Ankur |

What challenges did you face while making the film, especially bilingual?
Every film I have made has presented its own set of challenges. This film was made in Bengali but the Bengali spoken in the eastern parts is different from the language spoken in West Bengal. In fact, within Bangladesh itself, the Bangla in Dhaka is different from the dialect in Chittagong. Thanks to the literature I had read and the music I have heard,  I was aware of the culture this side of the border, but I had to familiarise myself with the milieu of the east for the film.
You have made several biographies earlier like Bhumika, Sardar Begum, Zubeidaa and films on Gandhi, Bose and now Sheikh Mujibur Rehman. As a filmmaker, is it possible to be objective about your subject?
I make these films because I admire these people, but as a filmmaker I have to be objective. However, one’s objectivity is limited by one’s perception of these people. Every filmmaker has his own viewpoint, his perception. They are fascinating characters… How you present them cinematically depends on your sensibility and sensitivity.
It is now 50 years since you made your first feature film Ankur (1973). Has it been a satisfying journey creatively?
No and yes. Every person strives for perfection but that is not always possible so one has to keep striving, and find satisfaction in the creative process. I have enjoyed experimenting with varied themes … from serious films to Mandi which was a comedy on the subject of prostitution.
MujubMujub |

You have made 24 feature films in these five decades, what are your three best films?
That is not possible for me because when I look back I notice flaws in my films. It’s also a matter of opinion. Many people, including me, would say that Pather Panchali is Satyajit Ray’s best film but he himself thought that Charulata was his most refined work.
You followed Ankur with critical triumphs like Nishant, Manthan, Bhumika and Junoon. This string of 1970s films can be credited with starting the art film movement in Hindi cinema. Your thoughts.
I have been a part of the art film movement but there were so many other directors who were making these kinds of films — Ritwik Ghatak, Adoor Gopalakrishnan, Mrinal Sen, Satyajit Ray, M S Sathyu, Govind Nihalani and others.
You have been a part of Indian cinema for 50 years, would you say it has changed for the better?
Technologically, the equipment available nowadays for lighting, editing and shooting is tremendous and they are able to shoot much faster. In comparison, the techniques we had were very primitive. Thematically too, cinema is bound to change because it have to keep up with the times. You don’t have to give the audience what they what, you have to create something new that they did not know they wanted.

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Clint Eastwood

10 forgotten Clint Eastwood films that few remember

To speak of Clint Eastwood is to allude to one of the most important actors and directors in Hollywood who, incidentally, took time to be mayor of the town of Carmel-by-the-Sea.
With more than 70 credits in his career, just as an actor, we tend to be clear about which Clint Eastwood masterpieces to evoke when we talk about his career.
Movies like The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, No forgiveness, Dirty Harry o Million Dollar Baby They are essential stops in his filmography, not to mention legendary ones like The iron sergeant o Gran Torino.
But today, in HobbyCine de Hobby Consolas, we will talk about 10 Clint Eastwood films that are usually forgotten by a large part of the public.
On the tightrope
On the Tightrope (1984)

Let’s start with one of the best eighties thrillers that Clint Eastwood starred in in the eighties: On the tightrope.
He actor Californian has starred in many thrillers throughout his career and, for some reason, this film with psychological overtones is not usually one of the first to come to fans’ minds.
Eastwood plays Wes Block, a New Orleans detective investigating a serial rapist and killer wreaking havoc on the city.
Soon, he discovers that he and the murderer have several sinister points in common, bringing to the surface fears that he thought buried forever.
The blacklist
The Blacklist (1988)
In 1988, Clint Eastwood played for the last time Harry Callahanthe always controversial Dirty Harry, in The blacklist.
For some, the weakest of the saga, for others, as good as the first. Be that as it may, the movie directed by Buddy Van Horn It is not the first that comes to mind when talking about the most scoundrel police officer that the actor has ever starred in.
Of course, some of us still look askance at remote-controlled cars when we see them on the street, lest it be…
A haul of $500,000
A $500,000 Loot (1974)
Eastwood’s career also took its time in heist films and buddy movies, and one of his seventies films was A haul of $500,000.
The movie of Michael Cimino paired Clint Eastwood with Jeff Bridges to plan and carry out a robbery of the supposedly impregnable Bank of Montana.
“Lightning”‘s (Eastwood) former partners form an uneasy alliance with them that could be more problematic than beneficial.
A $500,000 Loot is a great film that, despite all the technological advances, has aged quite well, being released in 1974.
The seducer
The Seducer (1971)
We cannot forget the heartthrob Clint Eastwood: to think that the actor only plays tough guys who would crack you like a nut for looking at them wrong would be unfair.
The seducer It takes us to the American Civil War, where the actor plays a northern soldier wounded in combat who is rescued by a young woman from a girls’ school.
After taking him to school, when the soldier recovers, he becomes a conqueror who drives everyone crazy, and by crazy we mean that the school becomes the headquarters of Celos International.
Alcatraz escape
Escape from Alcatraz (1979)
Don Siegel and Clint Eastwood have collaborated on numerous occasions throughout their respective careers. In 1979, director and actor signed Alcatraz escape.
See if we tend to forget this film, consolega, that even a certain editor of this website – yours truly – forgot about it when writing a news story about The Rock and stating that Sean Connery He was the first to escape from prison.
The best prison series: Vis a vis, Wentworth, Prison Break...
Clint Eastwood plays a tremendously insightful and intelligent inmate who has had enough of the prison system after several successful escapes.
In the end they intern him in the maximum security prison of Alcatraz, in San Francisco Bay, daring him to escape from where no one has managed to escape. A challenge that he gladly accepted.
Two mules and a woman
Two Mules and a Woman (1970)
In fact, Don Siegel was also in the director’s chair of Two mules and a womanone of Clint Eastwood’s westerns that we most often overlook.
Nor is it a bad film if there is a logical reason for it to be an unnoticed Western, but other films by the actor, such as The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, The Legend of the Nameless City, Death Had a Price or A Fistful of Dollarsthey tend to overshadow it.
License to kill
License to Kill (1975)
In addition to sharing a title with one of the James Bond films, although the 007 film came almost three decades later, License to kill was one of Clint Eastwood’s first films as an actor and director.
Released in 1975, this thriller uses the trope of the protagonist who reaches a dark past that he thought he had left behind.
Eastwood plays a former hitman who worked for an international organization.
Although he is retired, he is blackmailed and ordered to kill one of the three people trying to summit the Eiger in the Swiss Alps.
A perfect world
A Perfect World (1993)
A perfect world is a film that had the bad luck to see the light of day a year after Unforgiven and, in many ways, is overshadowed even by In the line of firealso released in 1993.
This road movie with a sixties setting puts Clint Eastwood in the shoes of a Texas ranger in charge of hunting down fugitives who have kidnapped a child during their escape.
suicide route
Suicide Route (1977)
Among Clint Eastwood’s police thrillers in the seventies, we also find the frequently forgotten Suicide Route.
The actor plays an alcoholic police officer who has the mission of escorting a prostitute from Las Vegas to Phoenix, although the obstacles they will encounter to prevent the witness from giving a statement will be constant.
Space Cowboys
Space Cowboys (2000)
More than forgotten, Space Cowboys It is usually vilified without much reason, since it is a very entertaining product without being, by any means, the best thing that Clint Eastwood has done.
The actor and director surrounds himself with some of the biggest names in Hollywood who have been sporting gray hair for decades for one last rodeo, yes, in orbit.
When a Russian satellite leaves its orbit, the creator of its systems is tasked with repairing it, but he will only go into orbit in the company of the companions he was able to fly with in the past.
None of the Clint Eastwood films that we have mentioned today are bad, far from it, but they are works that tend to be buried in that ocean of masterpieces that the actor and director has left behind throughout his many decades in the industry.

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