Casting Dave Bautista as Ernst Stavro Blofeld could have led to a much more dynamic version of the character opposite Daniel Craig’s James Bond.
A cast change could have led to a much more dynamic version of Ernst Stavro Blofeld for Daniel Craig’s james bond time. Christoph Waltz took on the role of James Bond’s nemesis in Craig’s last two films, SPECTRUM and No time for Die, following in the footsteps of Blofeld actors like Donald Pleasance, Telly Savalas and Charles Gray. Waltz was designed to look like his on-screen predecessors, even down to Pleasance’s iconic scar and fluffy cat, the only twist to the classic formula being the contrived and heavily criticized moment Blofeld was revealed as the sibling. adopted by James Bond.
Paying homage to the previous screen Blofelds, he also moved away from his physical appearance in Ian Fleming’s books. Although Blofeld went through a number of disguises across the three books he appeared in, he always retained one thing – a tall, imposing physique. On his first appearance in thunder ballhis body mass was described as “twenty stone” (280 pounds) having been an amateur weightlifter in his youth, with muscles that had softened under his “huge belly that he hid behind loose pants.” Although he lost weight in On Her Majesty’s Secret Servicewhen he last appeared in the James Bond novel you only live twicehe was described as a “dominant and horrible figure,” on “six foot three, and powerfully built. Waltz’s Blofeld retained the sharp intellect of Fleming’s character, but lacked the physical size that made him such a threat to Bond.
However, there was another actor playing a villain in SPECTRUM who had the potential to succeed both sides of Blofeld: 6’6″ former wrestler Dave Bautista, who played the silent henchman, Hinx. Had he been given the role of Blofeld instead, Bautista would have had the opportunity to flex the more subtle acting chops he showed in movies like Blade runner: 2049, and completely reinvent the character with a huge sense of menace. Indeed, when Bautista talked about wanting to play Bane in a Batman film, his approach seemed suited to Blofeld, explaining that he would get fat but be “the type of character who is so menacing and so terrifying and so intelligent, he would hardly ever raise his voice,” (via collider). To have Blofeld in this form would have shocked audiences who had grown accustomed to the countless parodies seen in films like Austin Powers, but retained his hulking essence.
It also would have given Daniel Craig’s Bond movie the chance to accomplish the surprise reveal it was aiming for. Throughout the advertisement for SPECTRUMChristoph Waltz had repeatedly denied being Blofeld, saying he played Franz Oberhauser, a name SPECTRUM revealed that Blofield adopted after murdering his father. However, speculation still swirled that he was Blofeld, with the character having too many similarities to deny. By casting Bautista or someone against the type of previous screen incarnations of Blofeld, the producers could have laid down red herrings more carefully without having to resort to a convoluted story about name changes.
Instead of relying on the plot of a long-lost adoptive brother to make it personal, the casting of Bautista could have done so by creating a threat unprecedented in Craig’s time in the role – someone who could crush James Bond in a fight and mentally outsmart him. , too. This would set him apart from other Daniel Craig-era villains like Mr. White, Dominic Greene, and Le Chiffre, who were more intellectual challenges for Bond than physical ones. Crucially, there wouldn’t need to be a family connection to make Blofeld’s threat any more significant, as having the two titans of the Secret Service and the underworld go head-to-head would have been quite dramatic.
The Daniel Craig era had already stripped Bond to its basics, exposing the brutality beneath its smooth surface and redefining the character in the process. Had he taken the risk and done the same for Ernst Stavro Blofeld, he could have created an equally definitive version of a classic character. Although Bautista will probably never appear in another james bond film, there is always hope that he will one day portray Bane as he wishes.
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