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Six Things We Learned About ‘SPECTRE’ from Sony Hackers UPDATE

Six Things We Learned About 'SPECTRE' from Sony Hackers UPDATE

Sonygate has struck James Bond just as “SPECTRE” started production this week at Pinewood in London.

1. Hacked Sony emails reveal that the budget had reached an unprecedented $300 million for the franchise, and that MGM president Jonathan Glickman urged cutting it to $250 million.

UPDATE: 2. An early version of the “SPECTRE” script was leaked along with notes by Glickman and Sony executives, focusing primarily on improving the third act. However, the Bond franchise is notorious for tweaking and rewriting scripts right on through production. Yet script spoiling of this magnitude is obviously unprecedented, and so EON Prods. has posted on OO7.com that legal action will be taken against anyone who publishes, reproduces, or disseminates the contents of the script (in whole or in part).

3. The budget led to casting changes. This directly resulted in the casting of Andrew Scott (“Sherlock’s” Moriarty) as new MI6 boss C, which saved $1 million rather than hiring Sam Mendes’ first choice, “12 Years a Slave” Oscar nominee Chiwetel Ejiofor.

4. Cuts were made. Indeed, Glickman made a host of cost-cutting recommendations, including scaling back the $60 million Rome shoot (which touts a high-speed chase along the Tiber river with a car flying off into the river and 007 parachuting from a helicopter onto the 15th century Ponte Sisto bridge, and where cinematographer Hoyte van Hoytema will be doing drone shots). Glickman also requested reducing the number of carriages in a crucial train fight from four to three (which producer Barbara Broccoli rejected). She also had difficulty locating a proper Italian villa in the UK. Glickman additionally wanted to ditch “the dramatic finale in the rain” to save on the cost of VFX.

5. But who will play Blofeld? Creatively, though, we also learned that Bond nemesis, Ernst Stavro Blofeld, will indeed make his first franchise appearance since the end of the Sean Connery era: 1971’s “Diamonds Are Forever” (played by Charles Gray). Yet the emails didn’t divulge who’s will be Blofeld. Christoph Waltz plays Franz Oberhauser (presumably the son of Hans Oberhauser, Bond’s ski instructor and father figure in Ian Fleming’s “Octopussy”), but maybe he’s also the SPECTRE mastermind.

6. There’s more female nemesis intel. Additionally, the hacked emails revealed that there will be “a lesbian bad lady” (shades of Pussy Galore), but will it be Lea Seydoux (Madeleine Swann, named in honor of Proust, no doubt) or Monica Bellucci (Lucia Sciarra)?

Meanwhile, the first image from “SPECTRE” posted on Facebook contains the Bulldog from “Skyfall.”

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