Skyfall filming in UK, is that bad?
There's been quite a bit of talk about Skyfall, budget and filming locations, but a story today tells us that the film is indeed dropping five of its six overseas planned shoots and the final one remaining will be Turkey, not the exotic locations we would have expected.
There are the opportunities for many jokes there, but I think we've had our turkey with the last film and now we need to move on, but with the majority of the filming to take place in the UK and on stages at Pinewood I've just had the feeling that we're heading back in the franchise, behind the scenes at least.
That's not a bad thing because if you look at films today there is a lot riding on locations and backdrops, in some you could easily argue that the focus is too much as the location overtakes quality in areas that are perhaps more important, such as plot, characterisation and performance.
So while we're seeing a drastic reduction in the amount of locations that Skyfall is filming in perhaps this is needed, after all Quantum of Solace (Filmstalker review) had some great locations and I can hardly remember anything of them with the biggest thing sticking in my head is the spectacularly mishandled ending.
Why does Bond need to be seen in real life, overseas glamorous locations, is it really going to hurt the film if it's all taken back a step or five and the concentration is on the story and the quality, everything that's going on in the fore and carries you through the film, the things that were indeed dropped in the previous film?
The article in The Guardian that tells us about the step back in locations is very tongue in cheek and suggests that Bond would be visiting Butlins holiday camps and that the Mirror article it references says that a source tells them most of the filming will be in Bognor Regis.
The immediate expectation is for lots of bad green screens, small scale sets and such that the old Bond could often be seen in, but we know with modern technology that won't happen, and Skyfall surely won't really be set in Bognor Regis. The magic of cinema will use Turkey for other locations and turn Bognor Regis and the Pinewood sets into any location they need.
Of course they could have paid less for a few stars, or taken on board a few smaller names and had more in their purse for a few outdoor visits to foreign locations, or is that a little too logical? The problem with the previous film wasn't the lack of huge stars, it was the lack of decent script, particularly at the end of the film.
Instead though the production is set on filling the screen with recognisable, big names, putting a huge non-Bond director behind the camera, and hoping that the script delivered by Robert Wade and Neal Purvis, who wrote Quantum of Solace, has been moved forward with the addition of Patrick Marber and John Logan enough to give Sam Mendes something to return Bond to the fore, even if he isn't globe-trotting.
Let's be honest though, he doesn't have to be in real foreign locations to produce a great Bond film does he?