While previous versions of James Bond portrayed the superspy as a detached, hard-hearted killing machine, Daniel Craig's Bond has always been shown to be highly emotional. His villains have also challenged Craig's Bond on a personal level, from his true love Vesper Lynd's betrayal in Casino Royale, to the evil organization Spectre's head turning out to be Bond's long-lost brother. Now, according to a recent GQ interview with Rami Malek, who plays the main villain Safin in the upcoming Bond movie No Time to Die, the trend will continue with Malek's character.
In the interview, Safin is introduced as "a former Spectre assassin and a powerful figure in the world of terrorism." The fact that Safin was a Spectre agent at one point makes his vendetta against Bond much more personal. In 2015's Bond movie Spectre, it was revealed that Ernst Stavro Blofeld, the head of Spectre, had been using his evil organization to torture Bond since the events of Casino Royale, out of a sense of hatred based on their childhood.
Even though James Bond managed to defeat Blofeld and Spectre in the previous movie, it seems likely that Safin will be carrying Blofeld's vendetta forward in No Time to Die, a likelihood that is further strengthened by the news that Christoph Waltz, who plays Blofeld, has been confirmed to be a part of the upcoming film as well.
Aside from representing Spectre, the emotional threat presented by Safin towards Bond extends even further, since the villain is also related to the childhood of Dr. Madeleine Swann, Bond's new great love, and it has been hinted that Safin wants to either take Madeleine for himself or eliminate her altogether. All in all, it looks like this is going to be one mission that will test Bond at an emotional level like never before, a fact confirmed by Léa Seydoux, who plays Madeleine, in a previous interview.
"There's a lot of emotion in this Bond. It's very moving. I bet you're going to cry. When I watched it, I cried, which is weird because I am in it."
Still, while Safin and Bond will most likely be bitter enemies, Rami Malek and Craig had a much better relationship while making the movie. In fact, Malek actually requested a scene be added to the film that would allow Safin and Bond to air out their differences like gentlemen.
"I remember us articulating we were hoping we could have almost a dinner conversation at some point, a certain philosophy that two people would have over a glass of wine and dinner and properly communicate rather than a petulant aggression between two people."
Phoebe Waller-Bridge, who was brought on board to write additional dialogs for No Time to Die, was happy to oblige Malek's request. At the end of the new scene, the bond between Malek and Craig had grown so strong that they celebrated with a drink together.
"I remember Daniel giving me a hug at that point. We were just elated. We did have some Negronis. He whipped some out at the end. He can mix a great cocktail, Mr. Craig can."
Directed and co-written by Cary Fukunaga, No Time to Die features Daniel Craig, Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris, Rory Kinnear, Léa Seydoux, Ben Whishaw, Jeffrey Wright, Ana de Armas, Dali Benssalah, David Dencik, Lashana Lynch, Billy Magnussen, and Rami Malek. This comes from GQ.