Official confirmation has arrived that the Bond 23 production will no longer be heading to India. The last information was that the production was delayed to January or March 2012 because of the need to relocate the scheduled stunts to an approved area, now it seems the Bond 23 team has pulled out, rumors are atwitter about South Africa perhaps replacing the picturesque Indian country side.
It is not clear yet what caused Bond to pull out of India, early reports were quick to blame the Railway Ministry for placing obstacles in the path of productions however India Take One Productions (who were in charge of tentative India productions) were just as quick to allay blame from the Railway Ministry. A move not completely unexpected since India Take One are located in India and no doubt will be working together with the Railway Ministry in the future. However could the problem with this have nothing to do with India side of the production?
Although nearly a year away from release Bond 23 has a lot of hurdles to cross to finish by the October 2012 release date, one thing to consider is Daniel Craig’s scheduled is very tight for 2012 filming both Bond and the next installment of the Millennium Trilogy (which also has a expected release date in the winter 2012). Could this be a case of the audience getting a lesser Bond so the star can quickly move on to his next project?
Maybe, too early to tell really. The locations shifting to South Africa if rumors are correct could be a strictly financial one and nothing to do Craig’s scheduled or anything else for that matter.
IANS | Sep 26, 2011, 12.00AM IST
James Bond is no longer coming to India. Despite a green signal from the Indian railways ministry, plans to shoot a few action sequences for the British super spy film have been shelved.
‘The production company, India Take One Productions, have communicated to the railway ministry that they are not shooting the next Bond film in India, and that they are looking at other places,’ sources from the railway ministry confirmed to IANS.
‘The production company has thanked the railway ministry for their co-operation in the past few months,’ added the sources.
The producers of the movie, tentatively titled ‘Bond 23?, wanted to shoot high-speed stunts on the Indian Railways. There was a request to shoot on the rooftop of a moving train, as well as inside a tunnel. However, they were having trouble getting permission due to safety and security issues.
Though the ministry gave the go-ahead to the film’s January-March 2012 shooting schedule, officials were worried about the production team’s demand of ‘locking off the lines for seven-eight hours a day for seven days in a row’.
The crew of ‘Bond 23?, starring Daniel Craig, had also short-listed Goa’s Dudh Sagar waterfalls as one of the locations.
Now, the shooting is likely to move to South Africa, according to media reports.
Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi has reacted to the news of the Bond film no longer being shot in India. “While the Bond franchise is important for us, so is the safety of people. God forbid if something untoward happened, people would not stop blaming us,” Trivedi says.
Pravesh Sahni from India Take One Productions (who was looking after the Indian leg of shooting the movie) doesn’t want to blame the Indian Railways for the Bond shooting not happening in this country. “Let’s not get into specifics about who is to be blamed for Bond not happening in India. I am not blaming the Railways at all. In fact, I have actually sent a letter to the ministry thanking the Railway Minister for personally taking an initiative in this issue,” Pravesh says.
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