AJB Interview with Tony Broccoli

BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 30,813Chief of Staff
Our next interviewee is a member of the most important family in the world of James Bond films.

Tony Broccoli has worked in various capacities on the James Bond series, including Production Executive on Spectre, Location Manager on Licence To Kill, Second Assistant Director on For Your Eyes Only and Octopussy, etc. His work outside the series has included such TV programmes as Destination X TV: Hawaii.

He has kindly agreed to answer our questions, and I'd like to ask our members to post them below. I know that you will not ask any personal questions, or expect any indiscretions.

Cut-off point for questions is Sunday at 17.00 GMT.
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Comments

  • HigginsHiggins GermanyPosts: 16,353MI6 Agent
    How was Sir Roger Moore when being on Set?

    I have never heard a bad word about him, his work ethics and the spirit that he‘s brought to others - can you confirm this?
    President of the 'Misty Eyes Club'.

    Dalton - the weak and weepy Bond!
  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 17,554MI6 Agent
    How much of his own diving scenes did Timothy Dalton do in License to Kill?
  • Silhouette ManSilhouette Man The last refuge of a scoundrelPosts: 7,579MI6 Agent
    edited August 2019
    Was there ever any consideration given to filming any of the James Bond Continuation novels in whole or in part? We've already seen Kingsley Amis' Colonel Sun torture scene used in Spectre of course.

    Has this overt use of one of the Bond continuation novels for the first time set a precedent for the inclusion of more continuation novel material in future James Bond films?
    "The tough man of the world. The Secret Agent. The man who was only a silhouette." - Ian Fleming, Moonraker (1955).
  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 30,813Chief of Staff
    Mr Broccoli has pointed out that he is not involved with the production of Bond25, and is in fact in LA while Michael and Barbara are in Europe shooting- so don't ask him about it!

    (I doubt if he'd say anything, anyway)
  • James SuzukiJames Suzuki New ZealandPosts: 2,383MI6 Agent
    What's been your favourite Bond film to work on and why?
    “The scent and smoke and sweat of a casino are nauseating at three in the morning. "
    -Casino Royale, Ian Fleming
  • ThunderpussyThunderpussy Behind you !Posts: 63,696MI6 Agent
    What was it like to be in Family so connected with Bond.
    Was directing ( assistant ) a pleasant experience or a
    stress filled experience .
    "I've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."
  • Charmed & DangerousCharmed & Dangerous Posts: 7,044MI6 Agent
    Before any production is planned, how much discussion within the family goes on as to the general tone or direction in which the next film - and perhaps the series - should be steered?

    Do the family take note of fans' discussions on AJB and sites like ours?

    (Barbel, I'm not sure how you're going to top this one, but well done on arranging this great series of interviews -{ -{ )
    "How was your lamb?" "Skewered. One sympathises."
  • ggl007ggl007 SpainPosts: 383MI6 Agent
    How do you see the future for the family Broccoli and Bond? Are you confident (sure) they will continue together for a long time?

    (Congratulations and thanks, Barbel).
  • ChriscoopChriscoop Belize Posts: 10,409MI6 Agent
    The Bond film franchise has had its fair share of ups and downs, thankfully more ups and we are now on our 25th Bond film, and it remains the most enduring film franchises in movie history. This is in no small part to Cubbys vision and determination, someone to whom we all owe a huge debt of gratitude, do you think Cubby would be happy with the direction the Bond films have taken? Going back to Casino Royale was straight out of Cubbys ethos it seems? Should we be seeing future Bond films looking back at Flemings literary work?
    It was either that.....or the priesthood
  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 17,554MI6 Agent
    I understand cutting cost is always important in a film production, but would you say the budget restraints were tougher during the Production of Licence to Kill than other Bond films?
  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 30,813Chief of Staff
    Thanks for the questions (and the kind words, guys, much appreciated) which I have now sent off to Mr Broccoli.

    Certain members are suggesting that I slow down these interviews, others seem to want them quickly. To a large degree this is outwith my control, and it may be some time before the next one... or not, I truly don't know.
  • ThunderpussyThunderpussy Behind you !Posts: 63,696MI6 Agent
    These interviews are tremendous fun, entertaining and informative. -{ So like
    A fat man at an all you can eat Buffet .... I don't really care about the speed of
    the service, ... just that they keep on coming ;)
    "I've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."
  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 17,554MI6 Agent
    In a time when the forum is strangely quiet these interviews are very welcome :)
  • ChriscoopChriscoop Belize Posts: 10,409MI6 Agent
    Echoing what's been said above by the 2 previous salubrious members, I'm really enjoying these interviews too, and the speed of them doesn't concern me either way, I'm just pleased they happen at all, so many thanks Barbel.
    It was either that.....or the priesthood
  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 30,813Chief of Staff
    Here is the first reply from Mr Broccoli.

    1. What's been your favourite Bond film to work on, and why?

    I’ve enjoyed every Bond film I’ve worked on but if I have to choose one I’ll go with “The Man with the Golden Gun”. I was 20 and it was the first film I’d worked on. I was at college at University of Notre Dame (it had just turned co-Ed) and suddenly I’m in Thailand for the summer. I love Asia and Thailand in particular, lovely people, beautiful girls, great food and beaches. A fun film crew, mostly British, some of whom I’d known since I was a kid visiting Bond sets. Bond films of course are well oiled machines, we stay in the best hotels, are well paid and since many of the crew are returnees there’s a great camaraderie. Roger was great, funny, down to earth and charming. Herve Villechaise was a wild and crazy partier, he would make a point of arriving back from his night’s revelries at 6 am when we were leaving the hotel to go to work, a girl on each arm . On a few of the other films I worked with the underwater unit which is great also, a smaller, tighter crew in a location with crystal clear water and beautiful beaches like the Bahamas and Cancun. But it’s great to be with the main unit, where the action is. I might add that growing up my father was often away making movies while I was in boarding school, so it was a special treat to be able to spend a few months with him. Unlike some producers he was very hands on and on the set every day. Usually playing backgammon with Roger! I’ll get to the other questions later, my answers won’t be as long!

    I do hope they are, that's a great answer.
  • Charmed & DangerousCharmed & Dangerous Posts: 7,044MI6 Agent
    Agreed, what a fascinating and detailed answer, I too hope they are just as long -{
    "How was your lamb?" "Skewered. One sympathises."
  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 30,813Chief of Staff
    2. I have never heard a bad word about Sir Roger Moore, his work ethics and the spirit that he brought to others on set- can you confirm this?

    Yes I can confirm all the good things said about Roger. A gentleman and a close friend of my family. A very funny man and a practical joker. And self-deprecating. I once visited him in Switzerland with my then girlfriend and she said to him “Tony says you’re so funny, tell us a joke”. His reply: “Well you’ve seen my acting haven’t you”?



    3. I understand cutting costs is always important in a film production, but would you say the budget restraints were tougher during the production of Licence To Kill than other Bond films?

    Being a location manager for the underwater unit on “License to Kill” I was not especially aware of budget constraints. Since the previous film, “Living Daylights”, was not one of the biggest box office winners, I imagine that was a factor. Also, filming in Mexico (and Mexican government subsidies) made it more cost effective.
  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 30,813Chief of Staff
    4. How much of his own diving scenes did Timothy Dalton do in Licence To Kill?

    As I mentioned I was the location manager for the underwater unit in Isla Mujeres, a small island near Cancun, Mexico. We were there for three months filming with sharks, mini submarines etc. Timothy, nor any of the other actors, were there. We used stunt men and doubles. Any underwater scenes involving Timothy were filmed in a water tank at the studio in Mexico City.


    5. Was there ever any consideration given to filming any of the James Bond continuation novels in whole or in part? We've already seen Kingsley Amis' Colonel Sun torture scene used in Spectre of course.

    Not being a producer or being intimately involved in the creative decisions, I don’t know the answer to this question. I’m sure that the “continuation” Bond novels have been read by the producers and other principals. They’re always looking for story ideas and they could come from anywhere, including the more recent 007 books.
  • HigginsHiggins GermanyPosts: 16,353MI6 Agent
    Barbel wrote:
    2. I have never heard a bad word about Sir Roger Moore, his work ethics and the spirit that he brought to others on set- can you confirm this?

    “Well you’ve seen my acting haven’t you”?

    :)) :)) :))

    Too bad that I haven‘t asked for more of these stories
    President of the 'Misty Eyes Club'.

    Dalton - the weak and weepy Bond!
  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 30,813Chief of Staff
    6. Was being an assistant director a pleasant experience or a stress filled one?

    Being an assistant director for me was always a fun experience. Of course there are always problems to solve and some stress involved. Being the son of the producer put me in a fairly unique position, and perhaps I was viewed differently. Of course I got the job because of nepotism and maybe some resented that. All I could do was to get on with the job and try not to be too big for my boots!


    7. Before any production is planned, how much discussion within the family goes on as to the general tone or direction in which the next film- and perhaps the series- should be steered?

    Much discussion goes on between the producers, writers, director and others. Yes I am part of the Broccoli family, but apart from an occasional opinion I have not been part of the creative team that makes those decisions.
  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 30,813Chief of Staff
    8. Do the family take note of fans' discussions on sites such as AJB and others?

    There are people in the “Bond” office who read pretty much everything written about Bond in the press, Bond sites etc. I don’t know how much consideration it is given but we want to make the fans happy!


    9. How do you see the future for the family Broccoli and Bond? Are you confident (sure) they will continue together for a long time?

    Barbara and Michael love what they do. I would describe them as workaholics (especially compared to me!). Michael is getting older and will likely slow down a bit. His son Gregg Wilson has been taking more of a lead role in recent years. I think Barbara will be the main Broccoli force for another 20 years or so.
  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 30,813Chief of Staff
    10. The Bond film franchise has had its fair share of ups and downs, thankfully more ups and we are now on our 25th Bond film, and it remains the most enduring film franchise in movie history. This is in no small part to Cubby’s vision and determination, someone to whom we all owe a huge debt of gratitude. Do you think Cubby would be happy with the direction the Bond films have taken?
    Going back to Casino Royale was straight out of Cubby’s ethos it seems, should we be seeing future Bond films looking back at Fleming’s literary work?

    I’m sure Cubby would be very happy with the continued success and with the direction the recent Bond films have taken, getting back to the more realistic and gritty tone of the first few films. Who knows where the Bond films will go in the future, but for now I think everyone is happy with the financial and (mostly) critical success of the recent outings.


    11. I understand cutting costs is always important in a film production, but would you say the budget restraints were tougher during the Production of Licence to Kill than other Bond films?

    Question already answered! I hope I’ve answered your questions satisfactorily. I did my best! And thanks for being Bond fans! Tony Broccoli

    And a huge thank you to Mr Broccoli for being such an informative interviewee.
  • ThunderpussyThunderpussy Behind you !Posts: 63,696MI6 Agent
    -{ another great interview, a big thank-you to Mr Broccoli. -{
    "I've been informed that there ARE a couple of QAnon supporters who are fairly regular posters in AJB."
  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 30,813Chief of Staff
    And my thanks to the members for their interesting questions.
  • Charmed & DangerousCharmed & Dangerous Posts: 7,044MI6 Agent
    So good to get a unique insight behind the scenes - and fascinating to note that the members of the EON team also read sites such as AJB. I wonder if we’ll see MGW wearing green trainers and Shakespearean doublet and hose in his next cameo... :))

    Thanks again to Mr Broccoli and hats off to Barbel for arranging another great interview. -{
    "How was your lamb?" "Skewered. One sympathises."
  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 30,813Chief of Staff
    {[]

    Lord Felix: Sir James, watch out for that man with green trainers!
    Sir James: Worry ye not, I'll not run him over!
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