Still considered one of the more iconic demises in the franchise, GoldenEye star Sean Bean recalls the unique challenge behind his James Bond villain’s death. Bean starred in the 1995 movie as Alec Trevelyan, a longtime friend of Pierce Brosnan’s Bond and a fellow 00 agent who faked his death who attempts to use a satellite weapon to take down the global financial system. Marking Brosnan’s franchise debut, GoldenEye scored rave reviews and was a box office hit, grossing over $350 million against its $60 million production budget.
While speaking exclusively with Screen Rant to discuss Knights of the Zodiac, Sean Bean reflected on his time working on the James Bond film, GoldenEye. In discussing the death of his villain, Alec, the star recalled how having to craft the sequence primarily through the green screen proved a challenge for him. See what Bean shared below:
That was [tough to imagine], yeah, at the time as well, because green screen, it wasn’t as fancy as it is now, so we had to use our imagination quite a lot on that. [Chuckles]
How GoldenEye Set A New Standard For James Bond
Nearly 30 years after it first hit theaters, GoldenEye continues to be a major changing point for the James Bond franchise. Though not critical failures, Brosnan’s predecesor Timothy Dalton found a far more mixed response from reviewers and audiences alike for bringing a much more serious approach to the iconic super spy than the decidedly campy Roger Moore era, which itself is considered by many to be a low point for the franchise.
Rather than return to this lighter tone, however, Brosnan and director Martin Campbell found a way to bridge the gap between those two distinct aesthetics with GoldenEye, retaining a more mature approach in evolving Bond without losing the grand fun of earlier installments. The film also introduced Judi Dench as M to the franchise, who would similarly bring a sense of humor in her dynamic with Bond while being given moments of genuine drama in her various follow-ups.
While Brosnan’s subsequent Bond installments were met with progressively worse reviews, GoldenEye did serve as a template for Daniel Craig’s franchise debut, Casino Royale, namely in retaining the mature approach to the character, albeit going even further than the 1995 hit. With Craig’s time at an end with No Time to Die and the search currently underway for the next Bond, it will be interesting to see how GoldenEye continues to influence the future.