They may be bitter rivals on screen, but they are best of friends in real life. Ironically, this helped them to perfect their scene-stealing onscreen tension with No Time To Die.
They play bitter enemies on screen – but new Bond villain Rami Malek has told how he became good pals with 007 Daniel Craig.
Rami, who was nominated for an Oscar for portraying Queen icon Freddie Mercury, in Bohemian Rhapsody won an Oscar. In No Time To Die, he plays a man determined to exact revenge.
Craig and he bonded as they spent hours on set perfecting the tension between the characters.
Rami, 40, said: “Daniel has done such an incredible job as Bond. It is important for him to go out on a high, and I believe we have done that. He pushed me hard, I pushed him on set, and we both really pushed each other to their limits.
“This is one of the fiercest Bond v Bond villains I think there has ever been. That’s why we worked each other so hard to get this right.”
He thinks that Safin’s baddie character will be as memorable and memorable as Bond villains Jaws, Dr. No, Blofeld, Jaws, Auric Goldfinger, and Jaws.
Rami went on: “It was fun to play a villain and Bond villains are some of the most iconic in history. He is a unique and complex villain, like something I don’t think we have seen before.
“Daniel called him misunderstood and I think there is probably some truth in that. This Bond is going to shock people.”
Commenting on No Time To Die – which is out on September 30 – producer Barbara Broccoli described Safin as “the supervillain” Add: “He’s the one that really gets under Bond’s skin. He’s a nasty piece of work”.
Craig, 53 years old, acknowledged that he was often overwhelmed by the pressure of taking over the role of 007 from Pierce Brosnan. “physically and mentally under siege”.
The New Apple TV documentary “Being James Bond” features James Bond telling the story of how he got drunk on Martinis three days after landing the role. He woke up every night to read the negative reactions after he was named the sixth Bond in 2005.
Rami, however, said this about his friend: “I think he has brought a real sensitivity to the character.
“We have seen some real vulnerability and a lot of back stories that explains why Bond is like he is. That sensitivity really manifests itself in this film.”
Rami – born in California to Egyptian immigrant parents – shot to fame in the US playing a computer hacker in the TV series Mr. Robot before finding worldwide stardom in Bohemian Rhapsody in 2018.