Casino Royale (1967)
The year was 1967. The whole world has fallen in love with Ian Fleming’s James Bond. Each of his movie adventures have became increasingly popular. 1964’s Goldfinger would become an international blockbuster making Sean Connery and the character of 007 icons of the 1960s. With the release of 1965’s Thunderball the excitment for James Bond would reach higher levels and again the film would be a huge hit.
While Bond was sipping his own vodka martinis, other spies began to spring out of the woodwork. The 1960’s ‘spy craze’ was born. Countless wannabes, imitators and knock-offs tried to get in on the spy-mania 007 created. There was no shortage of seeing a well-dressed hero in a foreign country kissing girls and shooting bad guys.
Meanwhile, the film rights to Ian Fleming’s first Bond novel Casino Royale was owned by producer Charles K. Feldman, leaving it completely out of reach from the hands of Albert ‘Cubby’ Broccoli and Harry Saltzman, the producers of the official series.
With the name James Bond being the hottest commodity to own in the 1960s, Feldman went about making his own cinematic version of Casino Royale. It would not be an adventure thriller, but a trippy comedic spoof of James Bond. A staggering budget, a hit parade of stars and five directors behind the cameras would be some of the behind-the-scenes mayhem. After a chaotic production Casino Royale would make its way to movie screens in the spring of 1967.
I take a look at Charles K. Feldman mammoth 1967 comedy – Casino Royale. Starring Peter Sellers, David Niven, Ursula Andress, Orson Welles, Woody Allen, Barbara Bouchet, Joanna Pettet, Deborah Kerr, Jacqueline Bisset, Terence Cooper and Daliah Lavi, with music by Burt Bacharach and Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass, directed by Ken Hughes, Josepeh McGrath, Robert Parish, Val Guest and John Huston.
Wow. There certainly seems like there’s a lot to look at here.