Almost 10 years ago, London dressed up to celebrate its long-awaited Olympic Games, a massive event that brought together more than 10,000 athletes and that, although it cost €11 billion, had the approval of most of the British. A superb show that included an unexpected number when, at the opening ceremony, Queen Elizabeth could be seen walking through the corridors of Buckingham with James Bond (in this case, in the skin of Daniel Craig) to get on a helicopter, fly over London and then simulate a jump from a parachute with which he arrived, impeccable, at the Olympic Stadium.
The curious joke, very unusual on the part of a member of the British royal family, but especially coming from the sovereign, remained in the retinas of millions of viewers. So much so that, almost a decade later, the anecdote continues to be remembered. A few days ago, the actor Daniel Craig went to a television program where they asked her about her and, taking advantage of her situation, also about how the monarch is at short distances.
It was during an interview on the American program The Late Show when the interpreter, who has given life to Bond for 15 years, was questioned about His Gracious Majesty. The presenter, Stephen Colbert, wanted to be cautious when throwing the answer at him. “I understand that you may not be able to answer this question, but I’m going to ask it anyway: What is she like in private?”
“Very funny”, did not hesitate to answer the interpreter. “He likes to crack jokes, and he cracked one about me. We were going to take some pictures and she jumped: ‘Oh no, this is the one with no smile!’ Fair enough, I have to say”, Craig laughed when explaining the anecdote, showing in turn that he knows how to laugh at himself. In addition, he also explained that he played for a long time with the queen’s corgis, the dogs that have been accompanying her for decades and that also appeared during the sketch. “I was lying on the ground with them most of the time. I mean, there they were. I think they have their own butlers. They are very friendly,” she assured.
Craig, British and honorary commander of the Royal Navy, was appointed at the beginning of the year as a member of the Order of Saint Michael and Saint George, a distinction that Bond himself also has in the films. The actor had already had a meeting with the queen in 2006, in the British capital, during the premiere of Royal Casino. Also, at the gala showing in London of the last film in which he plays the spy, in September, Craig was accompanied by the heir to the throneCharles of England, and his wife Camila, in addition to his son, William, and his wife, Kate Middleton.
But the meeting between the actor and the sovereign, in those London Olympic Games, is one of the most remembered of all these sporting events. The video with the six minutes of footage between Bond and Elizabeth II accumulates more than 53 million views on YouTube, and over the years anecdotes about that moment have been revealed. For example, his grandchildren Guillermo and Enrique joked after with which they had loved the interpretation of their grandmother: “It was so good that they have asked her to be the next Bond girl,” Guillermo laughed. Neither of them knew of the “secret hobby of skydiving”, as they commented, of the sovereign, and they were not aware of the recording of her with Craig.
In fact, one of the few people who did know and who has said something about it is Angela Kelly, dressmaker, personal adviser and confidante of the queen, who in 2019 he published a book where he recounted how the process was to convince the sovereign to participate in that game with Bond that came up to the film director Danny Boyle, in charge of directing the ceremony. Kelly recounted that he asked Boyle and Elizabeth II’s secretary to give him “five minutes” to ask him. Boyle, apparently, was stunned, but she preferred to close the matter as soon as possible: if the queen accepted, it was free and the plan could begin to get underway; if she said no, there would be no going back. Kelly tried her luck and she had it: the queen “was amused” by the idea of her and she only made it a condition to be able to say one sentence. She suggested ‘good evening, James’ but she preferred ‘good evening, Mr Bond’. Everything went ahead and then it was Kelly herself who was in charge of create two exactly the same dresses in peach colorbut of different sizes, for the sovereign and for the double that was in charge of jumping with a parachute.
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Daniel Craig reveals his jokes with Elizabeth II and her dogs at the London Olympics