Irate Chilean mayor storms Bond set

Simon Gardner
Thursday 03 April 2008 00:00
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James Bond has an unlikely new nemesis. Carlos Lopez, the mayor of Baquedano, a remote town in northern Chile, burst on to the set of the fictional super-spy's new film, Quantum of Solace, earlier this week and was detained by police.

"He got angry, entered into a private enclosure ... caused public disorder and was detained," said a police official from Baquedano. "Now it is in the hands of the prosecutor."

Mr Lopez is reported to have been angered by what he called an "excessive" police presence in the small town during filming, and the fact that Chilean soil was being used to represent neighbouring Bolivia. This anger caused Lopez to drive on to the set between the cameras and Bond actor Daniel Craig, interrupting the shoot.

"For a town that has just 1,000 residents, sending in special forces and water cannon, preventing people from walking in the street, reminded me of the worst of the Pinochet years," Mr Lopez said, referring to the dictatorship of General Augusto Pinochet, who ruled Chile from 1973 to 1990.

"I also disagree with national territory being used as locations [to represent] other countries," he said. "Even in a fictional film, unfortunately friendly, neighbouring countries use decisions like this to make unjustified claims."

Chile annexed the region around the northern mining centre of Antofagasta in a war in the late 19th century, depriving Bolivia of its only maritime border – an issue that continues to divide the countries politically today.

Quantum of Solace will be released jointly by Sony Pictures Entertainment's Columbia Pictures, and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios.

It is scheduled to open in Britain on 31 October, and around the world from 7 November. reuters

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