Britannia Awards 2012: British Artist of the Year - Daniel Craig

Depending on whom you ask, Daniel Craig is either the kind of actor whose presence on set provides motivation, or the kind who provides comic relief.

“Everybody wants to live up” to Craig’s level of dedication, “Skyfall” producer Barbara Broccoli says. “Everyone wants to do their best for him because he’s putting himself on the line.”

But Naomie Harris, who acted opposite Craig in “Skyfall,” points out the other side of Craig.

“Daniel worked very hard to make people feel completely comfortable, completely relaxed,” Harris says. “He lightens the atmosphere.”

She adds that when she first met Craig, she was intimidated and tried to slink quietly past a room where he was in a costume fitting. “And he ran after me, hit me over the head and he goes, ‘Where are you going, stupid?’ and gave me this massive hug,” Harris says. “And that to me sums up who Daniel is.”

These different versions of Craig may be a part of his success as Bond: Craig’s Bond is as vulnerable as he is slick. “Skyfall” deals directly with some of the backstory Harris says Craig has always lent the character.

“It’s all there in his eyes,” she says. “There’s a kind of woundedness about his character which really makes you empathize with him and makes Daniel incredibly believable.”

Adds Broccoli: “In the books, it’s an internal dialogue, so we needed to find an actor who could portray that conflict and all of the emotional turbulence that defines him. Daniel seemed, to me anyway, the only person who could do that.”

With three films in the franchise complete, Craig has thus far avoided typecasting by, as Harris says, “taking risks” with his non-Bond roles: such as a journalist in David Fincher’s thriller “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo” (2011) and an outlaw abductee in Jon Favreau’s “Cowboys & Aliens” (2011).

Broccoli says any concern Craig initially had about playing Bond fell away years ago.

“Everyone knows he’s James Bond, but that doesn’t prevent them from enjoying him when he’s playing another character,” Broccoli says. “I think that’s a tribute to him as an actor, and also to him as a person.”

Britannia Awards 2012
John Schlesinger Award – Quentin Tarantino | Stanley Kubrick Award – Daniel Day-Lewis | British Artist of the Year – Daniel Craig | Charlie Caplin Award – Matt Stone & Trey Parker | Albert R. Broccoli Award – Will Wright
Britannia Awards discovers jolly-good TV home

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