Nov 11, 2006

Random Intelligence Dispatches

Real Life
Of course the big real world spy news this week is that former CIA Director (1991-1993) Robert Gates has been appointed to replace Donald Rumsfeld as Secretary of Defense. So now there’s a military man in charge at the CIA, and an Agency man running the military. I hope that combo makes for better cooperation and communication, and, most of all, better intelligence! But there’s lots of places where you can read about that in much more detail than here...

The Bourne Antagonist
Edgar Ramirez has been cast as the baddie (described in the Hollywood Reporter as a "superkiller") in The Bourne Ultimatum. Could this "superkiller" finally be Bourne’s sworn literary enemy, Carlos the Jackal? I don’t expect Ultimatum to resemble the book of that title any more than Supremacy did (or Moonraker did, for that matter) but it would be cool to see Carlos appear in the Matt Damon series. Producers had been in discussions with Gael García Bernal, which would have been awesome casting, but couldn’t come to a deal.

See the new Bond early...
Advance screenings of Casino Royale are going on all over the place! (Press screenings mostly, and some contests.) Arrrgh! Why can’t I get into one??? If you know of one, please let me know! (Thanks.)

...and sing its praise!
Speaking of Casino Royale, Variety and Hollywood Reporter both gave it very positive reviews! (Although both noted that it ran a bit too long.) Be warned, though, both reviews are a bit spoilery, especially the Variety one. Here's a taste from the Reporter's review: "What a relief to escape the series' increasing bondage to high-tech gimmicks in favor of intrigue and suspense featuring richly nuanced characters..." The British press has also been lauding the movie... and new Bond Daniel Craig.

Luciana Paluzzi DVD
The 1967 Eurospy rarity One-Eyed Soldiers starring Thunderball’s femme fatale Lucianna Paluzzi has been available on DVD for a while, but it’s suddenly much easier to find. It’s from a tiny distributor, though, and the transfer is as bad as you would expect from the bootleg-quality low-res box art.

Huge DVD sale
You can get that and tons of other spy movies (well, and non-spy movies also for people who are into that sort of thing...) at’s twice-a-year 20% off sale! I find that this sale is really the way to get the very best prices on just about anything, and the shipping’s all free. The primary coupon code is SUPERSALE although there are usually several others enabling you to place a few separate orders. DDD always seem to have especially good prices on A&E DVDs, and A&E puts out a lot of spy shows like The Avengers, The Prisoner, The Persuaders!, The Saint, Danger Man, Secret Agent, The Champions, The Protectors and Randall & Hopkirk, Deceased (though that one’s really more detective than spy). If you’ve been meaning to check out one of these series, now’s a good chance to get a good buy!

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