LOS ANGELES (Variety.com) – Daniel Craig and Mads Mikkelsen first met while casting in the 2006 film “Casino RoyaleThis was Craig’s first ride at James Bond. Mikkelsen remembers their initial conversation while posing for costumes and what he thought was an audition. It was a crazy day, a Craig compared to “breeding cats.” The two were on a smoke break together when director Martin Campbell came over and said he didn’t need to see Mikkelsen, he got the part. Remembering Craig, Mikkelsen remembers, “You took a puff of a cigarette and said the famous words, ‘Who did you fuck, I did six castings for that? It was our first meeting.
Hearing this, Craig laughed and noted, “I can’t believe how spiritual I was!”
The cast sat down (virtually) with each other for the inaugural episode of “Dream Teams,” Variety’s new series that features collaborators who caught the light in a bottle. Having recently seen Mikkelsen’s turn in the movie “Another Round,” Craig was eager to discuss this performance, but the two also remembered playing poker, that infamous torture scene, and playing drunk.
Since taking on Bond and Le Chiffre, a banker who works with terrorists, Craig and Mikkelsen have pursued impressive acting careers. In “Another Round,” Mikkelsen plays Martin, a teacher caught in a rut who makes a pact with his friends to keep his blood alcohol level above 0.05 during the day. It’s a performance that won him praise from around the world, including from his former co-star – after seeing the film, Craig sent Mikkelsen an email praising his work.
“I could tell it was very authentic and I was really, really happy to hear from you and to hear that you enjoyed the movie,” Mikkelsen said. Craig replied, “I wish I could have written to all the actors, everyone was just amazing.” Craig also pointed out that the idea posed in the film – “we’re not all drunk enough” – feels particularly appropriate in this time of COVID.
Craig asked about the reunion with Thomas Vinterberg, whom Mikkelsen had previously worked with on “The Hunt,” and Mikklesen noted that the idea was originally thrown at him seven years ago, right after the making of this film. . “It started out as a tribute to alcohol, how it can win wars, how it can make people creative. How can that get people to pick up the phone and call someone special that they dared not do without two glasses, ”Mikkelsen said. Vinterberg then came across this theory from psychiatrist Finn Sk? Rderud, saying that human blood alcohol levels are naturally too low and should be 0.05 to keep you relaxed. “This theory came to him, and all of a sudden he had an idea. And then he started to build on it. But at the end of the day, Mikkelsen said, it’s a story about life, like all of Vinterberg’s films.
Craig praised Mikkelsen’s “beautiful job” especially at the start of the film, where we see how trapped and isolated Martin seems. “So much is happening and nothing is happening, it’s like you’re a little bit dead but you’re not dead and it’s like a deer caught in the headlights. You watch your life slowly go by, slowly unfold before you. I felt like I was seeing everything that was going on with you.
Mikkelsen also discussed the challenges of portraying his character’s breakdown early in the film. “It’s a bold move to make in the movie where you don’t know the character yet,” he noted. “You will normally be able to place it at the end.” But Mikkelsen added that as an actor, “what scares us also intrigues us, and we are drawn to it in one way or another. So I always find myself saying yes to something that’s an extremely radical, low-budget film, I find myself at minus 40 degrees somewhere on my own, and I’m like, ‘Why? I’m 55, what’s going on? “
While the two share an obvious rapport, they also discussed what it was like to play opponents in “Casino Royale,” specifically the infamous and intense torture scene where Le Chiffre ties Bond to a chair, takes the seat away. and tortures him with a knotted rope. . Mikkelsen recalled how the two discussed the scene with Campbell and circulated some crazy ideas. “We were from rock and roll movies, so we were just delving into that scene and we found so many great ideas,” Mikkelsen noted. “At one point he said, ‘Guys, guys, come back, it’s a Bond movie.’ It was always a scene that was on the borderline; it was borderline for a Bond movie.
Mikkelsen added: “It was a wonderful day for me – you, maybe not so much! You have eight hours to howl your lungs. To which Craig replied that it was a time when he was nervous about everything. “I can’t imagine the person I was that you saw back then, because I was so tense. – not tense – you know, trembling with nerves about everything. Because everything was so important. And I remember that day, knowing the scene was good, knowing it was a bit on the edge and that you walked in and just took him out of the park. And then it was happy, because it was just an acting scene.
Mikkelsen said he couldn’t tell Craig was nervous at all, and added, “There wasn’t a second that doubted you were the best Bond since we did the first scene together.”
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