He said it before and he’s saying it again. Despite the teaser suggesting as such, actor Christoph Waltz has once again denied that he will play classic Bond villain Ernst Stavro Blofeld in the upcoming James Bond film “Spectre”.
Speaking with British GQ, Waltz says: “That is absolutely untrue. That rumor started on the Internet, and the Internet is a pest. The name of my character is Franz Oberhauser.”
POTENTIAL SPOILERS AHEAD
It is indeed confirmed that Waltz is playing Franz Oberhauser in the film, but many suspect this will be a cheat ala Henri Ducard/Ra’s al Ghul in “Batman Begins” or John Harrison/Khan Noonien Singh in “Star Trek Into Darkness”. This franchise saw it as well in “Skyfall” with Naomie Harris saying only pre-release that she was an agent named Eve. This was despite rumors to the contrary she was Miss Moneypenny, rumors that turned out to be true when the film finally screened.
In the Ian Fleming short story “Octopussy,” a man named Hannes Oberhauser is an Austrian climbing and ski instructor who was something of a second father figure to Bond after his parents died. The recent teaser trailer shows a photo of an older man in ski gear with two boys, one with a burned out face. Behind it is a certificate giving temporary guardianship of James Bond over to Hannes Oberhauser years beforehand.
This suggests (but DOES NOT confirm) this story thread from the books has been employed, and that the two boys in the photo are Bond himself and Waltz’s Franz Oberhauser character which would effectively make them adopted brothers (albeit briefly).
That doesn’t necessarily mean Franz is Blofeld though. Indeed, with much of the film’s third act and Spectre organisation elements having been re-written in the wake of the Sony e-mail leak – a leak that included an early draft of the shooting script – there’s good reason to believe that Blofeld could be any one of a number of characters in the film.
Waltz also spoke about signing on for a Bond film and why, though hesitant at first, he’s excited by the result:
“I did [hesitate], yes. I always hesitate… You ask yourself, hang on: what James Bond are we talking about? The thing about Spectre is that it is not the work of hack writers. It does not have a hack director. The actors are not hams.
The action sequences in Mexico are extravagant to say the least. The scenes in Austria are traditional Bond action in the snow. These films with Daniel Craig have shifted the tone. They don’t depend on a set formula that forces actors simply to go through the motions.
A James Bond film can be artistically fulfilling. Absolutely it can. It can be complex and it can be interesting. I consider Bond movies to be an extension of popular theatre, a kind of modern mythology.
“Spectre” itself is slated to open around the world in late October/early November.