The Bond was so big and mighty in my career, and it is the gift that just keeps giving. I wouldn't be here today talking about "The November Man" if it hadn't been for James Bond. So, there was a desire, a want, and a need to make this film, "The November Man." I loved the title. It has a sensuality and a mystique to it.
I think you make the best with what you've got, you know? Sometimes you have very little. And you just always try to rise to higher ground, because you're going to suffer one way or the other, so you just hope that you have strength and perseverance and good friends and faith, some kind of faith, to endure and move on to greener pastures.
It felt after the Bonds, after my four outings as James Bond, there seemed to be unfinished business. And the way that the Bond finished in my life and the demise of Bond going off stage left into the night, it seemed like there was a certain void there, as they say, of unfinished business.
I found myself in the changed man theory the other night thinking, "Yeah." I thought, "My god. If we could do this again," but there was nothing specific there. There's just the kind of vague sensation of how I'd like it to go. I allowed myself that gift to think that.
And consequently, you have this rich looking film, which gives it this kind of muscular feel, deep focus, soft focus look. I'm not that great on development. I can see where things go wrong, but Beau, Carl and Mike Finch, they worked on it relentlessly. And then I would see the material and I would say, "Well, that just doesn't ring true. I don't quite know why that's happening."
When your partner gets cancer, then life changes. Your timetable and reference for your normal routines and the way you view life, all this changes. Because you're dealing with death. You're dealing with the possibility of death and dying.
I'm not very comfortable with watching my performances. I don't particularly find a great joy in it. Everything is the process of making it, of getting it, getting the job, saying yes to the job. Those are the joys. Making it is the greatest joy. And then, you have to show the bloody thing. You have to show and tell, be judged. But I don't listen. I don't pay much attention. I hear the rumblings of greatness or the arrows of discontent and harsh words. Then you go, "Oh God. Why?"
Love means that everything is right with the world. Love and only love. Love means that you are content within your own heart and in the presence of the person that you love, who fills your day and makes you stronger and wiser, and gives you the confidence to go out into the world. Love is just the most beautiful, joyous feeling.
I didn't think that and I didn't verbalize that to myself or within meetings that we ever had, but we wanted to make a hard-nosed, gritty, realistic spy thriller. Roger talked about using lenses. He shot hi-def, but using anamorphic lenses that he'd found from this warehouse. He was so thrilled with that. Him and Romain [Lacourbas] were just like kids in a toy store with their lenses.
Everybody gave 100%. I mean everyone, because they all knew that the film had the bones and the heartbeat of something that could be good. And everyone was in on it and wanted it for me and wanted it for Roger and Beau.
I'm an actor first and foremost. My producing credentials are just to say, "Yeah, I love this story and now let's bring the people, the ensemble together," and I get out of the way. I have no desire to check on schedules and shooting schedules and money and stuff like that.
It will be very hard to get out of Bond. It will be the pictures I do between Bonds that will color my career, that will give my career longevity after this franchise is over ... I will be stamped with this character for life.
We want the world to focus on children whose lives have been devastated by AIDS. The millions of children who are missing their parents; their childhood, their future but most importantly, they are missing YOU. Everyone can make a real difference. Your voice is needed in a global movement that can change their world.
The White Palace was pretty impressive. Very impressive, in fact. The day to day running of the set was everybody showed up for work. They are seasoned filmmakers over there. They have an infrastructure for filmmaking, which is very healthy. It's small, but they were tenacious, polite, timely.
Being here by the ocean in Malibu. Living in this beautiful house that we built, that took so long to build. Being in my art studio, painting. Packing my bags tomorrow to go home to Kauai where we have a house. Which all sounds very grand, and I suppose it is, in some respects, but nothing comes from nothing. It all comes from hard work.
I love these kind of movies as a kind of cinema-going geek myself. Those characters, you want to be like those characters when you go to the movies. You know, when you see a movie with a guy who's really cool and the killing's slick and easy. I don't know. There's something intoxicating about it.
Together we are stronger, our voices louder, and the synergy of our actions more powerful. Together we can prevail on the Navy to put commonsense safeguards in place, like requiring its ships to avoid the most sensitive marine mammal habitats and to stop their training exercises during peak migrations.
Being with my wife and children in Kauai, seeing old friends there, being on the beach, painting, paddleboarding. Sitting under a Kauai moon with a bonfire going, buddies around. Those are the things that kind of make my world turn.
Liam in Taken has been great to see. My boys love it. They love him. And there's just the gravitas to it. It's believable. You know the guy's endured. You know the guy's lived some life. Someone like Liam has lived a lot of life. Myself, I've lived a lot of life. There's loss. There's success. There's loss. There's doubts. And there's some heartbeat there.
From '86 until the summer of last year, wherever I went, people would say, You would have made a great James Bond! Weren't you going to be James Bond? You should have been, you could have been, you may have been. Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes. It was like unfinished business in my life. I couldn't say no to it this time around.
Many people think that hunger is unavoidable in any society, even a society that is blessed with great abundance. That is not true. The European community does not have widespread hunger. America, which leads the world in so many ways, can end childhood hunger within its borders.
So that would be my input and I'd go off and I'd work on another film, and then I'd catch up with them later on in the year. We just kind of nursed the piece along. There was no timeframe. We didn't have anyone pushing us except ourselves to make the film, and a desire. And then the organic kind of naming of Roger; then it happened really fast.