“I’m away from home for eight months. There’s no other way of doing it. My family hate me,” he admitted. “They’re just starting to forgive me now.”
"But you’re in James Bond so whatever," Grimshaw quickly quipped in response. To which Craig paused and tentatively agreed. But the workload hasn’t stopped him putting his all into the job.
“It’s been a huge part of my life for the past two years. All I want is to make the best film we can.”
The first press screening of SPECTRE, the 24th James Bond film, took place last night, and a flurry of near-unanimously positive reviews have followed. But the work’s not over for stars Craig and Naomie Harris as they continue a rigorous promotional tour.
It’s an all-consuming job, making a 007 film. And not just for its leading man. Much though the viewers are aware that this is a film production on a large scale, it’s hard to grasp exactly how large.
“When you walk on those sets, and it’s the biggest set you’ve ever seen, I can’t put it into words,” he said. “We rebuilt Westminster Bridge on the 00 stage.”
Even the costume department has a massive job.
“If you think about a fight sequence where I get cut or the other guy gets cut and that’s 30 seconds into the sequence. So however long it takes to shoot 30 seconds, which can be a day, we need one suit for that day, another suit for the next day… So every stage of the fight has a different suit because it’s broken down in a different way,” said Craig.
“We can get through 30 suits for one fight sequence. We have this incredible team of people whose job it is to break it down and they age the suit so it looks dirtier through the sequence. But it has to match.”
Fortunately there’s little risk of real injury in the action scenes.
“You get nervous, of course you do, you wouldn’t be human if you didn’t, but you’re working with the best in the business,” he said. “The worst that will happen if you fall off that thing is that you’re wearing a harness and it’s embarrassing and you’re dangling in mid-air.”
It was, however, such a large project that the film was in post-production right up until the last moment – with director Sam Mendes only finishing editing on Saturday.
“It’s one of the wettest prints there’s been, because we release it on Monday,” Craig said.
SPECTRE’s theme song, Writing’s on the Wall, is performed by Sam Smith, and both Craig and Harris revealed that they will meet him for the first time when they film tomorrow night’s Graham Norton Show, which is a James Bond special.
“It makes so much sense in the context of the film,” said Harris, of the song. “It’s going to fit amazingly.”
As for what Craig will do next, he only has one answer: “Take a holiday.” We can’t blame him.