Mark Strong on his Failed James Bond Audition: “I cocked it up”

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“Leaving it late or leaving it to the last moment so you can catch something unexpected – which some actors do, and I admire that – that’s not me. I like to prepare.” – Mark Strong on Auditions

Olivier Award-winning actor Mark Strong has a history of playing intense, often villainous characters with his stern English accent — and even appeared Bond villain-like in several Jaguar ads — which makes it seem odd that he has yet to appear as a villain in a James Bond film. As it turns out, in an interview with Den of Geek, Strong reveals that he did, in fact, audition for a Bond film while Pierce Brosnan was playing 007 — but the audition didn’t go well.

“I cocked it up. I’d underestimated what it would feel like being in the room. You can be at home and you can practice and do your lines but when you get into the room and the moment comes where everybody sits back and says ‘okay then, give us what you’ve got’, that’s quite a tense time.”

Strong admitted that he didn’t realize just how many people from the Bond team would be in the audition room, and he came off as unprepared. He has learned from that experience, explaining, “Leaving it late or leaving it to the last moment so you can catch something unexpected – which some actors do, and I admire that – that’s not me. I like to prepare.”

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