“The trouble with [Quantum of Solace], it was a bit of a shit-show, to say the least,” the actor admitted during an interview on The Empire Film Podcast. “The full weight of it was there; I kind of think that made me probably lock up.”
Craig further explained that his first turn as Bond, 2006’s Casino Royale, was a positive experience, partially because he was able to tune out gossip and Hollywood politics going on behind the scenes. “I remember [shooting Casino Royale] with massive fondness. And all this other shit was going on around it, which was meaningless at the time because I knew we had a good film, I knew Casino was good. You kind of go, ‘Wait and see, it’s going to be great, don’t worry,’” he said.
However his experience shooting Quantum of Solace was not the same. A writers’ strike caused the film to begin shooting without a completed script. “On Quantum, we were fucked. We had the bare bones of a script and then there was a writers’ strike and there was nothing we could do. We couldn’t employ a writer to finish it,” Craig recalled to Time Out in 2011 (as reprinted by Collider). Instead, he and director Marc Forster had to pick up the slack. “The rules were that you couldn’t employ anyone as a writer, but the actor and director could work on scenes together. We were stuffed.”
Complicating matters even further, Craig had begun to feel the weight that came with playing Bond.
“I would sort of yearn [for] the person I was when I did Casino,” he admitted on The Empire Film Podcast. “Too much knowledge sometimes is not a good thing. I was sort of in the dark about a lot of things, about how things worked, the mechanics of it, how the world really viewed Bond — all of those things. I just didn’t understand them.”
Most fans and critics alike regard Quantum of Solace as the weakest film in Craig’s Bond tenure. Still, that didn’t stop the flick from being a commercial success. Quantum of Solace raked in more than $580 million at the global box office, ranking among the highest grossing movies of 2008.