Austrian-German actor Christoph Waltz has been speaking briefly about his character in the forthcoming James Bond movie Spectre.
Waltz, who has won an Oscar, a BAFTA, and a Golden Globe for his roles as villainous characters in Quentin Tarantino films Inglourious Basterds (2009) and Django Unchained (2012) and it’s very easy to typecast the Austrian actor as a villain for a third time.
Waltz has been at pains to spell out the name of his character – Franz Oberhauser – but was very coy when asked about the potential for a future reveal as a legendary Bond villain Ernst Stavro Blofeld.
Although ostensibly a new character, Oberhauser remains a name from the past as far as James Bond is concerned, with references to a father figure named Hannes Oberhauser for the young Bond – a ski instructor who mysteriously disappeared.
Franz Oberhauser could yet turn out to be less overtly villainous than could be assumed and may yet have past links to Bond.
As Bond has modernised, so has the role of women in the Bond films, becoming more than mere decoration within the films over the years.
The role of M was handed to Judy Dench in Goldeneye (1995) along with then new Bond Pierce Brosnan after it was revealed that Stella Rimington was in charge of the real MI5.
We’ve already had a series of capable women in the Bond franchise from equally capable spies and equals of Bond such as Barbara Bach as Triple X in The Spy Who Loved Me (1977) to Naomie Harris who plays a reinvented Moneypenny who is a former MI6 field agent.
We have also seen a female villainous mastermind, Elektra King (played by Sophie Marceau) in The World is Not Enough (1999).
The possibility of one of the leading women in Spectre, Lea Seydoux (playing Madeleine Swann) or Monica Bellucci (playing Lucia Sciarra), turning out to be the big villain in disguise would be a plot twist that has happened before in the Bond franchise and relatively recently too.
One loose end from the first two Bond movies, Mr White, played by Jesper Christensen, and a senior figure in QUANTUM, an organisation not too dissimilar to SPECTRE is apparently slated to return in Spectre.
His character has not been mentioned in the big press releases and the name is clearly a pseudonym. Is Christoph Waltz happy to be a decoy?