Malcom Sinclair as Dryden in Casino Royale

Dead on Arrival. Malcom Sinclair as Dryden in Casino Royale (2006)

Starts: The MGM logo and the Columbia Pictures Logo are shown. Dryden rolls up to his office in Prague.

Black and White sets the tone of the film. It’s not a completely humourless film but there is nothing tongue in cheek about Casino Royale.

Dryden enters his office in Prague at night, in a presumably empty building. Dryden when reaching his office realises his safe has been opened and emptied and a voice behind him in the corner tells him, ‘M really doesn’t mind you making a bit of money on the side Dryden. She just prefer it if it wasn’t selling secrets.’

Daniel Craig Casino Royale pre titles

Bond in the shadows

The shadows

It’s Bond, and he’s sitting down, in the shadows. The fact he’s sitting down suggests he’s been there awhile and made himself comfortable. There is a nod to Dr No here when Bond waits for Professor Dent and also, the shadows! M talks about this in Skyfall where we must do battle.

Dryden sits down at his desk and opens his desk drawer and is comforted to find his gun. He replies, ‘If the theatrics are supposed to scare me you’ve got the wrong man Bond.’

Dryden is also relaxed here. He knows he’s been exposed but he has his gun, he has Bond in his sights. And by the fact that he calls Bond by his surname, suggests that he deems Bond to be inferior.

Dryden casino royale

Dryden alarmed but not scared.

Why hasn’t Bond killed Dryden straight away?

My reasoning is that yes it makes for good cinema, a story needs to be told here. But Bond also wants Dryden to know why he has to die. It’s almost a gentlemanly thing to do, ala extending Major Dexter Smythe in Fleming’s Octopussy, the courtesy to contemplate his options.

Also why do the writers of the film want you to know this is in Prague? Dryden’s Office is actually a building in Prague, the Danube House in the centre of Prague to be exact.

1) For my money they want you to know this is not London. That Bond is on a mission. Being sent from MI6 in Vauxhall to an office in Brixton just south of the Thames doesn’t feel like much of a mission, not much of a stretch.

2) We do not kill our own, on our own soil. We’d much rather do it on someone else’s soil. There is something very KGB about that no?

Listen to the From Tailors With Love podcast

Listen to Bud West from The Bond Brain and I, break down this opening minute of Casino Royale on the podcast. Direct download here. Or player below. Available on Apple and Spotify.

What Bond Wore

Consulting with Z from Tie Another Day,

A lot of Casino Royale clothing is still unknown. There is a cricket club bathroom scene where Bond is wearing a navy linen suit with a light blue shirt and looks like suede loafers.

There is some BTS photos that have this in detail, also the suit is seen on the from cover of Bond On Set (Casino Royale) by Greg Williams. In terms of the manufacturer, I think Academy costumes of London did that suit and shirt. Both are linen from my knowledge.

In terms of the Prague office, again a lot of unknowns.

Navy peacoat, manufacturer unknown, similar to the Billy Reid coat, although it has lining and interior pockets, or makes it out to have as bond holsters his P99 in the interior pocket.

The cardigan is a button up cardigan, it is possibly Craig’s own one, he wears something similar when he was doing press interviews for Layer Cake. Has some really interesting button closures.

The t-shirt underneath is likely to be Sunspel, a blue grey colour.

The trousers are either a glen plaid check or a sharkskin, not easy to identify. If it is the glen plaid, then it could be Ted Baker, as they did supply quite a bit of the clothing. Ted Baker provided the casual trousers for the Bahamas, and possibly for the pts when Bond is in the office with Dryden. The issue is that it is in black and white and there are some bts pics, that indicates that it could be a glen plaid pair but it is still unknown sadly.

2min mark “Flashback to Bond in the toilet fighting Fisher played by Darwin Shaw.”

(Image credits, 007 Casino Royale [2006] screenshots used for context).

Further reading

My ‘Saucy Daniel Craig’ Photos I bought off eBay – The Other Shorts from Casino Royale