Pierce Brosnan

A Hero for the Nineties

(Speak Up, April 1996)

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Pierce Brosnan plays 007 in GOLDENEYE, the latest in a long line of Bonds films dating back to 1963. SPEAK UP asked the actor how he approched the character and if Sean Connery was his role model.

Pierce Brosnan: I can only aprroach it like I approach every other job and that is find... try and go for the truth of the chacacter and the sincerity and be as honest as possible. Otherwise it becomes a sham, it becomes fraud and I'm not doing my job. But I cannot help but hear and see Sean in my mind's eye. And I cannot reproduce what Sean did, he did what he did. Fortunately, I have a very good director in Martin Campbell who's got a very good ear and likes actors and appreciates the performance and, you know, this is an action movie. But you do have a character here and we have a script which feeds me as an actor in a couples of scenes, which is enough, two scenes, to kind of have an emotional bite on the part, because we're dealing with betrayal whithin this. So there's enough there from an acting point of view to have an emotional intensity to it. And also, hopefully, have colossal fun.

SPEAK UP: Do you think it's true that in GOLDENEYE Bond is now a hero for the nineties?

Pierce Brosnan: What does a Bond for the nineties mean? Is he politically correct? Well, up to a point, yes. But he still likes the women, you know, he has the girl here, he has the girl there and he's got an eye for them, you know and he's got a sense of honour, and there's a certain sense of tradition about him. He's a one-man show as it were, he does his job doggedly, but with a sense of... with a flair to it. When Sean did it in the sixties, it was just... it captured everyone's imagination. and I think with the heroes that we've seen in the DIE HARDS and the Mel Gibson in the LETHAL WEAPONS, and you want to get underneath and you want to see just a little bit of vulnerability, even when a guy is very cool and very effective at what he does, I think we should be able to see a little chink in the armour.

SPEAK UP: I understand that it was after seeing one of the early Bond films that you decided to become an actor yourself.

Pierce Brosnan: I saw GOLDFINGER. And, as a boy of eleven in 1964, I left Ireland and I remember the first weekend I was here in England my parents took me to see GOLDFINGER. And you've got to remember this is a boy of eleven who grew up in the Christian Brothers, who was an altar boy in the country. And first of all, it was in colour, which was incredible; I'd never been in a cinema that big; I saw this naked woman covered in gold paint; I saw this little chinaman whit a hat that was made of metal cut this statue's head off. And I saw this incredible character, who was Sean Connery, playing this man, James Bond, who could do no wrong, who just... every move was perfect. And I suppose that was the seed of wanting to become an actor.

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