Mel Gibson on turning down James Bond

Yesterday I posted an excerpt from a recent interview I did with Mel Gibson for his new movie, Banditwhere he discussed optimistically The status of Deadly Weapon 5. The full transcript of the interview will be out tomorrow, but here’s another tease. Everyone knows that at one point Mel Gibson was offered the role of James Bond, and in my interview the actor himself explained why he turned it down.

This happened when discussing his new movie Banditin which Josh Duhamel plays the infamous Canadian bank robber Gilbert Galvan Jr. I told Gibson that I thought Duhamel was incredible in the film, but that it was very different from the usual lighter romantic roles he gets. Gibson noted that when someone excels at a genre, they are sometimes pigeonholed, fondly remembering Sean Connery and how he couldn’t escape James Bond until he did. The untouchables in 1987. It was here that Gibson remembered being offered 007 himself in the early 1980s.

“I was offered the James Bond movies when I was just twenty-six, which is about forty years ago, okay? And they said, hey, we want you to be the next James Bond. And I thought about it; I was in Australia, I was working with Peter Weir. And I’ve thought about it, and I’ve kind of turned it down – for that reason. Because I thought, look what happened to poor Sean, he was stuck there for three decades.”

As soon as Gibson mentioned Weir (one of my all-time favorite directors), I had to ask him if the movie he was working on Gallipolia. Gibson replied that it was their next movie, The Year of Dangerous Livingwhat they were doing. I told him that both of these are masterpieces to me, to which he replied:

‘Yes, that was Peter. He’s one of those rare talents…’

There’s a lot more to come from Gibson tomorrow, as well as interviews with the whole Bandit cast including Duhamel, Elisha Cuthbert and more. Bandit hits theaters tomorrow and VOD!

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