18 years ago, British spy James Bond was filmed as the Lake Palace Hotel in Udaipur, India. Roger Moore played Bond in the 1983 thriller which also featured India’s Kabir Bedi and Vijay Amrithraj (tennis star, who now lives in Malibu).
Now India’s Information and Broadcasting Ministry has given shooting permissions for the next James Bond installment – directed by Sam Mendes – to film in multiple locations including Delhi, Goa and near Ahmedabad in the western state of Gujarat, according to the Hollywood Reporter.
The Daniel Craig-starrer has been given permission to shoot in locations in North Goa. Similarly near Ahmedabad, the production has sought permissions to shoot in an area that is close to certain power and fuel installations. Quoting a source, the report said, “We have suggested that these vital installations be avoided during the shoot in this area.” In the capital Delhi, the Bond production is expected to shoot in the crowded old bazaar area of Daryaganj and in the Sarojini Nagar flea market popular for its many clothing stalls and shops while Mumbai is also expected to be on the agenda. Set for release in 2012, Bond 23 (the movie has not been named) marks the 50th anniversary of the successful franchise.
A number of foreign films have been shot in India in recent years – the 2008 Oscar winning hit Slumdog Millionaire being the most prominent. Others are Ang Lee’s Life of Pi, and the Julia Roberts-starrer Eat, Pray, Love. Michael Winterbottom’s new film Trishna, starring Slumdog Millionaire actress Freida Pinto, was also shot in India earlier this year.
What this means:
India is fast becoming a mainstream destination for big-budget movies and top name stars, from Angeline Jolie, to Julia Roberts, to Daniel Craig. Singers such as Lady Gaga are also expected in India.