‘Skyfall’ China Censors

The Chinese government has censored James Bond and Skyfall, tinkered with certain pivotal scenes to fit its view of the world. Without ruining the plot too much:

The missing scene was set in Shanghai, when a French hitman (played by Ola Rapace) is shown shooting a Chinese security guard in the elevator lobby of a skyscraper before preparing for an assassination.

Berenice Marlohe and Daniel Craig in Skyfall
Berenice Marlohe and Daniel Craig in Skyfall

Later in the film, in a casino in Macau, Daniel Craig’s Bond questions the story’s femme fatale, Severine (Berenice Marlohe), about whether her tattoo is the result of her being forced into a local prostitution ring at an early age. While the lines remain intact on the soundtrack, the Chinese subtitles suggest the spy is asking her quarry about being coerced into the mob instead.

The film’s Chinese subtitles also fudged the exposition of the back story of the film’s villain, Raoul Silva (Javier Bardem), who tells Bond how he was handed over to the Chinese authorities while working for the MI6 in Hong Kong. He adds that he suffered immense torture at the hands of his interrogators before attempting to kill himself.

Chinese censors? I wonder what Jackie Chan has to say about this.

Very Greek: Tonia Sotiropoulou

I took a semester of Greek in college and bumbled my way through the Alphas and the Betas*. It is a great language filled with root words that I recognize from prior meetings. When I saw the name of the new Bond girl, Tonia Sotiropoulou, I used my previous Greek training (do not try this at home) to ferret out that she was indeed, Greek.

Very Greek: Tonia Sotiropoulou

It’s the role every female actress wants, and Naomie Harris nailed it.

But it seems the Pirates Of The Caribbean actress will have some competition on her hands, as Skyfall introduces a new Bond girl.

Director Sam Mendes has cast Greek beauty Tonia Sotiropoulou alongside Daniel Craig, with the unknown actress bound to rocket to A-list status.

Tonia revealed on her Facebook page: ‘Dear friends. I officially announce I got a part in J. Bond new film!!! Turkey here I come! Thank u all for you love and support! This is officially the happiest day of my life bitches!!!!’

Ha ha, bitches? That does not sound very Greek of her. Τόνια Σωτηροπούλου, allow me to translate:

Αγαπητοί φίλοι. Μου ανακοινώσουν επίσημα πήρα μέρος σε J. Bond ταινία νέα! Η Τουρκία εδώ έρχομαι! Σας ευχαριστώ όλους για u αγαπάς και υποστήριξη! Αυτό είναιεπίσημα η πιο ευτυχισμένη μέρα της ζωής μου σκύλες!

The Bond film, Skyfall, appears to be an interesting romp. Some intel:

Production on “Skyfall” began in October 2011. Filming is being done in Turkey as well as Scotland, England and Shanghai, China, where the first still image from the film was shot. It shows Craig as James Bond, holding a pistol.

“Skyfall” hits theaters on October 26 in the United Kingdom and November 9 in the United States. It also features another new female character, the gun-toting field agent Eve, played by Naomie Harris. The actress is known for her role as Tia Dalma in the “Pirates of the Caribbean” films. She said her Bond character thinks of herself as the spy’s “equal.”

Daniel Craig sandwiched between Bérénice Marlohe and Naomie Harris

In the film, Bond’s loyalty to Judi Dench’s character, M, head of MI6, is tested after her past comes back to haunt her. The British Secret Intelligence Service is attacked and 007 sets off to stop its perpetrator. Also, in at least one scene, he will “swap his trademark martini” for a sip of Heineken beer, according to a recent report by Advertising Age.

Heineken? Are you kidding? Instead of shaken, not stirred will it be chilled, no lemon?

* I got a lot of mileage out the joke, as do all Greek students, that the language is all Greek to me!