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Making a killing: why James Bond is forever

Level 1 l Elementary
1 Warmer
1. How many James Bond films can you name?
2. Which is your favourite Bond film?
3. Which is your least favourite Bond film?
4. Who was the best James Bond actor? Sean Connery, George Lazenby, Roger Moore, Timothy Dalton,
Pierce Brosnan or Daniel Craig?

2 Key words
Fill the gaps in the sentences using these key words from the text. The paragraph numbers will help you.
audiences

nostalgic

retro

script

series

1. A ____________________ is a set of television programmes or films that are all about the same subject or
person. (para 1)
2. ____________________ things are like clothes, music, films etc from the recent past. (para 3)
3. If you feel ____________________, you remember happy times in the past. (para 3)
4. A ____________________ is the written words of a film. (para 4)
5. ____________________ are all the people who watch a film in the cinema. (para 7)
experienced

scene

stunt

inflation

elaborate

6. ____________________ is when prices increase so that money becomes less valuable. (para 8)
7. If someone is ____________________, they have skill at something because they have done it a lot. (para 9)
8. An ____________________ production is very detailed and complicated. (para 9)
9. A ____________________ is something dangerous, such as jumping from a building, that entertains people,
often as part of a film. (para 9)
10. A ____________________ is a part of a film. (para 9)

3 Find the information


Find the following information in the text as quickly was possible.
1. How much have the Bond films earned at cinemas around the world?
2. When was the film Skyfall released?
3. What will the 24th Bond film be called?
4. Which actor played Bond in Skyfall?
5. Who was the first actor to play James Bond?

NEWS LESSONS / Making a killing: why James Bond is forever / Elementary

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6. When was Goldeneye released?

Making a killing: why James Bond is forever

Level 1 l Elementary
Making a killing: why James Bond
is forever
Andrew Pulver
5 December, 2014
1 James Bond films are one of the worlds oldest and
most successful film series. Twenty-three Bond
films have been made so far. They have earned
more than $6 billion at cinemas around the world.
James Bond is not slowing down. In fact, the films
are more popular than ever Skyfall, which broke
all records and became the biggest ever film at UK
cinemas in 2012, earned a total of $1.1 billion.
2 So, there was a lot of interest when they announced
more details about the 24th Bond film especially
its title, Spectre. The number one question is: can
Spectre be as successful as Skyfall?
3 Charles Gant, film editor for Heat magazine, thinks
it can. They were very clever when they made
Skyfall, he says. It was both modern and retro.
Daniel Craig fans liked it and, also, older, more
nostalgic Bond fans, who lost interest over the
previous few films. With the new title, he adds, it is
certain to be a success.
4 Eon Productions is the company, started in 1961,
that made Dr No and all the official Bond films.
The company really wants the next film to be
successful so it is using the same people that
worked on Skyfall in the new film. Daniel Craig will
play Bond and the same people have written the
script. Most importantly, Sam Mendes will again be
the director. According to Gant, Mendes is the best
Bond director. Gant says: Mendes attracted top
actors like Ralph Fiennes. Actors like Fiennes will
only be in a film if they like the director.

were during a period in the late 80s when more


aggressive Hollywood action movies were more
popular. According to Gant, the period of Roger
Moores last films and Daltons films didnt excite
audiences. Brosnan was more successful but Craig
is the best. On the other hand, the early Bond films
were sexy and exciting.
8 Skyfall made more money than all the other Bond
films. But some of the 1960s Bond films were
almost as successful. With figures adjusted for
inflation, the 1965 film Thunderball is only a little bit
below Skyfall. And Goldfinger and You Only Live
Twice both did better than the other Craig films.
Licence to Kill made the least money of all Bond
films and Moores final film, A View to a Kill, the
second least.
9 Martin Campbell is an experienced British director
and he planned one of the most elaborate stunts
in Bond history. In the famous first scene of
Goldeneye (released in 1995), Bond falls into a
light aeroplane without a pilot. This scene helped to
make the Bond series more modern and popular.
Also, a very successful Goldeneye video game
created new, younger fans of Bond and made
people think that the Bond film was no longer boring
and old-fashioned.
Guardian News and Media 2014
First published in The Guardian, 05/12/14

5 The Bond series was not in trouble before the


arrival of Mendes and Craig but the films were
becoming a bit boring towards the end of Pierce
Brosnans time as Bond. There were no longer any
more original Bond stories to adapt and the films no
longer had enough energy.
6 This was nothing new: the history of the Bond
series has been one of constant change, especially
of the lead actor: first, Sean Connery; then, George
Lazenby, Roger Moore, Timothy Dalton, Brosnan
and, now, Craig. Each new actor has been different
and some have been better than others.

NEWS LESSONS / Making a killing: why James Bond is forever / Elementary

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7 Lazenby only did one Bond film. Daltons two


films, The Living Daylights and Licence to Kill,

Making a killing: why James Bond is forever

Level 1 l Elementary
4 Comprehension check
Match the beginnings and endings to make statements about the text.
1. A lot of people are wondering if

a. earned less money than any of the other Bond films.

2. Skyfall was popular because

b. Spectre can be as successful as Skyfall.

3. The same people that worked on Skyfall

c. helped to make the Bond series more modern


and popular.

4. Six different actors

d. both Daniel Craig fans and older Bond fans liked it.

5. Licence to Kill

e. have played the role of James Bond.

6. The famous first scene of Goldeneye

f.

will also work on Spectre.

5 Chunks
Rearrange the words to make phrases from the text.
1. a interest lot there of was
2. this nothing new was
3. on hand other the
4. the films few previous
5. famous the scene first
6. more six than dollars earned billion

6 Two-word phrases
Match the words in the left-hand column with the words in the right-hand column to make phrases from
the text.
1. film

a. scene

2. Bond

b. movie

3. constant

c. fan

4. action

d. actor

5. first

e. editor

6. lead

f.

NEWS LESSONS / Making a killing: why James Bond is forever / Elementary

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change

Making a killing: why James Bond is forever

Level 1 l Elementary
7 Word-building
Complete the table using words from the text.
noun
1.

experience

2.

success

3.

popularity

4.

fame
verb

5.

bore

6.

excite

adjective

adjective

What kind of films do you like? Why do you like these films?

Do you like James Bond films? Why? Why not?

Macmillan Publishers Ltd 2015


NEWS LESSONS / Making a killing: why James Bond is forever / Elementary

Do you go to the cinema? Why? Why not?

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8 Discussion

Making a killing: why James Bond is forever

Level 1 l Elementary
KEY
2 Key words

6 Two-word phrases

1. series
2. retro
3. nostalgic
4. script
5. audiences
6. inflation
7. experienced
8. elaborate
9. stunt
10. scene

1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.

3 Find the information


1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.

$6 billion
2012
Spectre
Daniel Craig
Sean Connery
1995

e
c
f
b
a
d

7 Word-building
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.

experienced
successful
popular
famous
boring
exciting

4 Comprehension check
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.

b
d
f
e
a
c

5 Chunks
there was a lot of interest
this was nothing new
on the other hand
the previous few films
the famous first scene
earned more than six billion dollars

NEWS LESSONS / Making a killing: why James Bond is forever / Elementary

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1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.