btw

The New Yorker film critic Anthony Lane must be feeling pleased with himself about the news that the next James Bond movie - the 21st in the franchise - will be Casino Royale, based on Ian Fleming's first Bond novel, published in 1953. Reviewing the plonking Die Another Day three years ago, and deploring the triumph of technology over suavity that the films had become, Lane addressed the master spy in these words: "All right, 007, listen carefully: I want you to go and meet a gentleman named Lee. Ang Lee. Take him a copy of this novel, Casino Royale. It may look like an ordinary paperback, but concealed within is an array of clever tricks, some of them, I don't mind telling you, on the dodgy side, and - here's the thing - nobody seems to have put it to proper use. There was once a joke version, but that doesn't count. Be a good chap and tell our Mr Lee to turn the book into a period drama, would you?" The "joke version" was a terrible 1967 spoof movie starring David Niven, Peter Sellers and, er, Woody Allen. It looks like the people at MGM have heeded Lane's suggestion. Now all they need is a new Bond. Pierce Brosnan parted company with the management after a row about profit share.

Escort agencies everywhere will be rethinking their fee structure after Geri Halliwell's evening with the German impresario Dickie Lugner at the Vienna Opera Ball. First she refused to attend a press conference at her host's Lugner City shopping mall, then she hid from photographers at the Imperial Hotel, then she ran away from some more photographers at the Opera House and had to be dragged back inside. And when she was supposed to be personally greeted (live on television) by the Austrian President, Heinz Fischer, she'd got lost somewhere in the corridors, trying to find the ladies'. For this triumphant service, Herr Lugner is said to have shelled out a mere pounds 500,000. For his sake, I hope she was worth it.

Michael Gambon, slated to play Falstaff at the National Theatre's Henry IV in May, has a Falstaffian fondness for winding up people. He once met Robert De Niro and Al Pacino in a London club and the subject of his knighthood came up. "What would anyone want with a goddamn knighthood?" the US actors demanded. "You don't understand," said Gambon, "If you're an English knight, you can sleep with any woman in the land. It's called the Knighting Law. No woman is allowed to say no." Pacino and De Niro believed him for approximately 30 seconds before loudly denouncing him as a fantasist. During a lull between drinks, Gambon had a word with a quartet of girls at the bar. Five minutes later, the girls walked past the starry crew of Pacino, De Niro, etc, and Gambon said to one girl, "Excuse me, young lady, but I would like to sleep with you tomorrow night." "How dare you?" exclaimed the girl. "You foul man." "Perhaps I should point out I'm Sir Michael Gambon," said Gambon suavely. "Oh God, the Knighting Law," said the girl, playing along. "Oh - all right then." The faces of the American thesps were, they say, a picture.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Recruitment Genius: Photographer / Floorplanner / Domestic Energy Assessor

    £16000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Photographer/ Floor planner /...

    Ashdown Group: Front-End Developer - Surrey - £40,000

    £30000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Front-End Developer - Guildford/Craw...

    Recruitment Genius: Customer Service Assistant

    £13500 - £15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Customer Service Assistant is...

    Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - OTE £35,000

    £16000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An ambitious and motivated Sale...

    Day In a Page

    Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

    Not even the 'putrid throat' could stop the Ross Poldark swoon-fest'

    How a costume drama became a Sunday night staple
    Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers as he pushes Tories on housing

    Miliband promises no stamp duty for first-time buyers

    Labour leader pushes Tories on housing
    Aviation history is littered with grand failures - from the the Bristol Brabazon to Concorde - but what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?

    Aviation history is littered with grand failures

    But what went wrong with the SuperJumbo?
    Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of Soviet-style 'iron curtains' right across Europe

    Fortress Europe?

    Fear of Putin, Islamists and immigration is giving rise to a new generation of 'iron curtains'
    Never mind what you're wearing, it's what you're reclining on

    Never mind what you're wearing

    It's what you're reclining on that matters
    General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

    Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

    The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
    Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

    Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

    Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
    Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

    Marginal Streets project documents voters

    Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
    Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

    The real-life kingdom of Westeros

    Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
    How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

    How to survive a Twitter mauling

    Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
    Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

    At dawn, the young remember the young

    A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
    Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

    Follow the money as never before

    Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
    Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

    Samuel West interview

    The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
    General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

    Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

    Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
    Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

    Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

    The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence