TALK OF THE TOWN: No, Mr Bond, I expect you to do thighs… Daniel Craig’s 12-hour secret missions to get in shape before his 007 finale
It is nearly 13 years since Daniel Craig left millions of women in heaven by emerging from the ocean in Casino Royale in his swimming shorts. And now I can reveal that the Bond star is going all out to give fans a buff body to swoon over one last time.
As he begins filming tomorrow for what is expected to be his final outing as the suave spy, my sources tell me that Craig, 51, is determined to look just as good as he did in that iconic beach scene. He has been enduring a gruelling diet and fitness regime that culminated in staggering 12-hour workout sessions last week.
Sources on set say that Craig – who last year became a father for the second time when wife Rachel Weisz gave birth to a daughter – has been taking his fitness incredibly seriously. They are astonished at the work he is putting in to get himself in shape for one of the most hotly anticipated roles of his career.
Daniel Craig, who first appeared as James Bond, 14 years ago, has been enduring a gruelling diet and fitness regime that culminated in staggering 12-hour workout sessions last week
One said: ‘Daniel is nearly 14 years older than when he first played 007, so it is going to be far more physically demanding on him.
‘Being Bond requires a lot of energy and he is determined to make sure he is ready for it. It’s an action movie and he wants to give it his absolute best. Everyone is anticipating him looking amazing when he finally puts on that tux for the last time.’
Craig is understood to have jetted to the secret location where sets have been built. The film, which is set to be released next year, has suffered a series of setbacks. Director Danny Boyle quit last summer over ‘creative differences’ with Craig, producer Barbara Broccoli and screenwriter Michael G. Wilson. Craig also asked to delay shooting so that he could star in another movie, Knives Out.
Meanwhile, I can also reveal that Bodyguard heart-throb Richard Madden – currently the favourite to replace Craig – has a serious rival for the role.
Daniel Craig has jetted off to a secret location to begin filming the movie
Fellow Scot Sam Heughan, 38, has received a call from producers asking him to audition as Ms Broccoli prepares herself for a new era of the movie franchise.
Sam is most famous for his role as Jamie Fraser in the Amazon TV series Outlander. Like Madden, 32, he fits the bill of being Scottish and in his 30s – two factors that the franchise’s top brass want.
‘It has been 36 years since there was a Scottish Bond in Sean Connery and producers are looking for someone to emulate that success,’ a source says.
‘Sam is an experienced actor, he’s in great shape and he has a cheeky side which is appealing as the bosses want Bond to have more to him.’
Sam was even in the frame to take over from Pierce Brosnan when he quit in 2002 but he was deemed to be too young.