James Bond has a very strong connection to Istanbul

With the SKYFALL crew now in Istanbul, this marks the third time in the 50 Year history of the James Bond franchise that the city has served as a backdrop to 007’s adventures, with previous outings including FROM RUSSIA WITH LOVE and THE WORLD IS NOT ENOUGH.

James Bond has once again returned to Istanbul for “Skyfall”, the latest film in the longest running movie series, which celebrates half a century of legendary spy action this year, said Director Sam Mendes.

Director Sam Mendes and film stars Daniel Craig, Naomie Harris, Berenice Marlohe and Ola Rapace attended a press conference in Istanbul on April 29. Craig says Istanbul and Bond had a strong connection for years.

Mendes, producers Michael Wilson and Barbara Broccoli, along with film stars Daniel Craig, Naomie Harris, Berenice Marlohe and Ola Rapace attended spoke to the press at the Çırağan Palace Kempinski hotel on April 29. “Bond has had a close relationship with Istanbul… It has been 49 years to the day since Bond was last here,” said Craig, who took over the Bond character in 2006 with “Casino Royal,” according to AFP.

Skyfall, the 23rd film in the Bond series, is being filmed in several locations in Turkey, between the southern province of Adana and the southwestern coastal town of Fethiye, as well as in Istanbul’s historical Grand Bazaar. Istanbul was chosen as the venue for “Skyfall” to mark the 50 year anniversary of the legend in “the favorite city of Ian Flemming”, the British author who invented “James Bond” in 1953, said Broccoli. “We wanted to be here because it is the most magnificent place. It is an incredible city. I can’t get enough of it,” said Mendes, who spoke to the press in Istanbul after more than 100 days of shooting “Skyfall” in Turkey. Bond may even have a car chase scene on the very epitome of Istanbul, the Bosphorus Bridge, Mendes said, hinting that the city may continue to appear in forthcoming Bond movies.

“We are here for 20 days and we have experienced the best time we’ve had during the shootings. Istanbul is the best city of Turkey,” said Mendes, adding that Turkish people were very friendly towards them.

Mendes also said Craig is a very talented actor and the best actor to play Bond in the new generation.
Crag said this is his second visit to Istanbul. “This is beautiful city. But on the other hand, we had a great time in Fethiye,” he said.

Watch footage from today’s SKYFALL press conference in Istanbul with Daniel Craig, Sam Mendes, Naomie Harris, Bérénice Marlohe, Ola Rapace and producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli.

There were many difficult and dangerous scenes to film for the movie according to Craig. “We need to take care of the protection and we used stuntman.”

Mendes said each city they filmed in was different. “We are more into what the city gave to us. The cities that we made the shootings in are very different.” When asked about the damages done by the film crew in the Grand Bazaar, Mendes said they were minimal. “The only damage that was made was on the glass plate that we made.” Responding to a question on whether they will portray Turkey like Iran Craig said the city stands alone. “Istanbul is Istanbul and we do not show it like any other country or city. We will show Istanbul as it is. Do not worry this is a great city,” he said.“Skyfall” is expected to be released in late 2012. Additional reporting from AFP and AA.

Author: istanbul

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