1st Bond Novel 'Casino Royale' Headed To The Silver Screen

(antiTainment) Ian Fleming's first James Bond novel, "Casino Royale" is finally being properly adapted to film.  This will mark the 21st official 007 action drama to hit the big screen.  It is scheduled for release next year. 

But who will play Bond, now that Pierce Brosnan has been dropped from the role? That is the question.  Speculation has run rampant; the top rumored contenders include Colin Farrell, Hugh Jackman, Eric Bana and Jude Law. 

Martin Campbell, who took over the franchise in 1995 with "Goldeneye" will once again direct.  Campbell has hired on Neal Purvis and Robert Wade as screenwriters and they will begin work on the script after Campbell completes work on his current project "The Legend of Zorro". 

This however will not be the first version of "Casino Royale" to make the big screen. When Fleming sold the film rights to Albert Broccoli in 1961 for the Bond franchise, he had already sold the rights to the debut novel in the series. 

In 1954, the novel was adopted for a live TV broadcast starring Peter Lorre, Linda Christian and Barry Nelson as "Jimmy Bond".  In 1967 a spoof version of "Casino Royale" was released by Columbia pictures. The all-star film featured David Niven as Bond but Woody Allen, Peter Sellers and a chimpanzee also played secret agents named James Bond in the film.  The madcap comedy boasted an impressive array of supporting actors including John Huston, Orson Welles, Ursula Andress, Richard Burton and an uncredited role by Peter O'Toole.

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