Movies | September 9, 2021 11:19 am

We Deserve a Sexually Fluid James Bond

Producer Barbara Broccoli says that a "Skyfall" scene hinting at the spy's past experience with men almost got cut

Javier Bardem as villain Raoul Silva in the movie "Skyfall" touching Daniel Craig (who played James Bond) on the chest
Daniel Craig and Javier Bardem in "Skyfall"
Sony Pictures

James Bond is a notorious womanizer, but a brief scene in the 2012 film Skyfall implied that the British spy may have also had sexual encounters with men. And according to longtime Bond producer Barbara Broccoli, it almost didn’t happen.

For those who don’t remember, Skyfall features a scene in which 007 (played by Daniel Craig) is strapped to a chair by villain Raoul Silva (Javier Bardem). Silva touches Bond’s chest and thigh suggestively, saying, “You’re trying to remember your training now. What’s the regulation to cover this? Well, first time for everything I guess.” Bond responds, “What makes you think this is my first time?”

In the new Apple TV+ documentary about Craig’s time as James Bond called Being James Bond, Broccoli recalled how the studio insisted that the homoerotic scene be cut, but she fought to keep it.

“I remember we were told to cut that line by the studio and we said no, no, no,” she says in the documentary, as noted by The Guardian. “We resisted.” Later, at the premiere, she was validated by the audience’s response to the scene.

“The night of the premiere, that line, just the whole place rocked it then … I remember looking at the studio executive [and] going, ‘See, told you,’” she says.

She was right to fight for the scene, because a sexually fluid or gay Bond is groundbreaking. Representation matters, and for such a stereotypically macho action star — not to mention a classic icon of masculinity — to not be straight would send a powerful, important message. And let’s be honest, it kind of makes sense. Bond is constantly falling into bed with people; we’re supposed to believe that never once included a man?

Interestingly, though Broccoli fought hard to include the rather tame suggestion that perhaps it did, at least one former Bond actor seems certain she’d never allow the spy to actually come out completely. “I don’t think Barbara would allow a gay Bond to happen in her lifetime,” Pierce Brosnan said in 2015. “But it would certainly make for interesting viewing.”