The story of Daniel Craig, who once painted walls for lack of money and now shines in Hollywood

In the fall of 2021, the premiere of another film about the talented MI6 agent James Bond. This picture was the last with the participation of Daniel Craig in the role of the legendary spy. 15 years he devoted to work on this franchise, starring in 5 films and becoming the most profitable Bond in history. Now it’s hard to believe, but once he was considered a completely unsuitable candidate for this role.

We decided to find out how it happened that the actor, in whom few people believed, managed to revolutionize the Bond franchise and become a universal favorite.

Daniel’s parents divorced when he was four years old. The boy and his sister were raised by his mother Olivia, who worked as an art teacher. They lived modestly in a poor neighborhood in Liverpool, but despite all the hardships, Olivia managed to get the children into a good school. Learning Craig did not like it and he often failed exams, because of which he was laughed at by his peers. At the age of 14, at the insistence of friends, the guy took part in a musical school production and made a good impression on the audience.

In high school, the future actor was engaged in professional sports. He played rugby and performed in the school team. At 16 he managed to successfully audition for the National Youth Theater, and he performed in it for the next 6 years. To make ends meet, Craig worked part-time as a theater worker and painted walls in apartments and offices.

Debut in the movie was a role in the movie “The Power of Personality”, filmed in 1992. This was followed by work in the film “Anglo-Saxon Relations. Although the last tape and failed at the box office, Craig began to pay attention to directors, and in the noughties, he turned into a star of art house cinema. Despite the fact that such projects have a limited audience, his popularity began to slowly gain momentum.

For a long time he played episodic, but notable roles. Craig was especially good at psychopaths and negative characters with ambiguous character. One of the most striking examples can be called his hero in the movie “Elizabeth” – a mercenary sent to straighten out the queen. Cold detached look gave his image frightening credibility.

The general public became acquainted with Craig in 2001 after the release of the film “Lara Croft: Tomb Raider”, where he played in tandem with Angelina Jolie. Then one after another followed projects in which the actor acted in the main cast, performing the roles of the main characters.

Craig’s career skyrocketed. The next few years, projects with his participation came out one after another, gradually bringing him closer to the status of Hollywood star. One of the most successful films of that period was “Munich”, directed by Steven Spielberg and received 5 nominations for “Oscar”.

In 2004 in the life of the actor was an event that completely turned his career: he met Barbara Broccoli – producer of films about Agent 007. About this few people knew, but the franchise was then experiencing crisis times, and Broccoli believed that the series of motion pictures about the fearless Bond needs a reboot. It was a bold decision, since, as a native British product, Bondiana had largely held on to a conservative constancy, having remained virtually unchanged for decades.

Barbara believed that new films should be strikingly different from previous ones, which meant that Pierce Brosnan, who had played Bond in the last four installments, was no longer suitable. Broccoli herself chose Craig, as she thought he was ideal for the role. She first saw him in the film “Elizabeth” and admitted that was shocked by his game.

When Craig was first invited to discuss his possible participation in the new Bond film, he was confused. Looking at the posters on the walls with Sean Connery and Pierce Brosnan, he sincerely doubted that he could create a similar image. About this he honestly told Broccoli, but she was persistent and forced Craig to think hard.

He was 36 years old, career blossomed, but the actor was rarely recognized on the streets and in the crowd he remained an ordinary guy, which suited him fine. Most of all Craig was afraid that the role in such a popular project will ruin his quiet life.

In 2004, Brosnan announced that he would no longer portray Agent 007, and Craig continued to stall and think whether to accept the offer. The producer was still patiently waiting for his verdict. And the actor demanded the script tape “Casino Royale”. The story was so good that Craig still decided to participate in the project.

When the creators of the project announced that the new Bond will be 37-year-old British actor Daniel Craig, there was a massive hype. People argued that this is far from the most suitable candidate for the role. Jokingly, Craig was radically different from all previous performers of the role of MI6 spy. Average height blond, with rough facial features, he did not look like an elegant gentleman with refined manners and such charm that all the women around to go crazy for him.

Disgruntled Bond fans created several websites where they wryly discussed the actor’s appearance. The strongest of all he got because of the straw-colored hair, which did not fit with the description of the book character Ian Fleming. The most vehemently resented the British, for whom Bondiana has become a cultural treasure, and any radical changes in it they perceived in the bayonet.

The whole world was saying that Craig could not become a worthy Bond. When news of this reached the actor, he called his mother and asked: “Can I play James Bond?” And she told him, “Of course you can. But I’m your mother.” Craig admitted he understood the fans’ reaction, “I know why they don’t like me. I know because I don’t like myself. So I understand them.”

At the premiere of the movie “Casino Royale”, sitting in the auditorium, Craig was terribly panicked. During the first scenes, he heard the audience laughing and thought, “Oh. Oh, for crying out loud!” But as the opening music played and the credits ran, the audience warmly welcomed the new Bond, and he realized the audience liked him.

For dissatisfied fans, everything fell into place after the release of the movie “Casino Royale” in wide distribution. The picture received full approval, and there was no doubt that Craig is excellent for the role of a spy MI-6. The subsequent parts of the franchise finally cemented his status as the most successful Bond in the history of the film epic.

So how is it that the actor who was not wanted for this role not only outlasted all of his predecessors, but also stayed in the project longer than any other actor in the role?

It’s simple. Bondiana, which used to be a comedic sarcastic spy action movie, became much more serious in the updated version. Agent 007, as we knew him in the performance of Sean Connery and Pierce Brosnan, was a kind of embodiment of the ideal man of the past years. He was well-versed in the arts, always looked as if he had just stepped off the front page, and dealt with his enemies skillfully without breaking a sweat. The old version of the franchise, although it occupied its niche among cinematic epics, was not a serious genre action movie.

The same cannot be said about the updated version of Bond. From the first frames of the tape “Casino Royale” we understand that we are facing a tough movie, in which the main character appears as what he essentially is – a spy, capable of any cruelty for the sake of accomplishing the mission. And this image Craig managed to embody on the five.

Of course, his version of Agent 007 retains the traits of the classic Bond. He still loves Aston Martin cars, wears expensive watches and orders his favorite cocktail from the bartender. He still turns the heads of the ladies, although he does not have an incredible charm. But there is some male charisma and a note of indifference in him, which makes the fair sex sigh languidly in his presence.

By the way, the attitude of the protagonist to women also changes. He turns out to be capable of serious and deep feelings, which in combination with his severe and brutal appearance looks very touching.

To get into the image of Craig helped reading Fleming’s novels, in which Bond was not an ironic superspy, as we saw him in the old films of the franchise. Book 007 appears as a living person with his own heartaches and experiences. Craig managed to feel all the pain and inner torment of the character and faithfully reproduce them on the screen.

Craig devoted 15 years to this role, during which 5 films were released. The updated Bond film starring him was so successful that it is on par with Marvel and Star Wars.

In between tapes about Agent 007 Craig starred in other projects, and many of them were also well received by the public. One of the most notable was the detective “Get Knives”, for the role in which he received a nomination for the “Golden Globe”.

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