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Friday, December 28, 2012

Bond on the Tube - Skyfall - Tubefall?

Many of you know that scenes from the third highest grossing film of 2012 - Skyfall - were shot on the London Underground.  It was one of the biggest film productions ever to be filmed on the Tube, with over 450 cast and crew filming at the disused part of Charing Cross Tube station over several weeks. I'm not a Bond fan, so haven't seen the film.  Fortunately Tube Challenger Adham Fisher (
@directiontravel) went along to see it recently to review how accurately the Tube was featured

"Londoners who have viewed the latest James Bond offering, Skyfall, might have felt there was something not quite right about the depiction of the Underground. 

Bond pursues Silva in the subterranean passages of London. From headquarters, Q tells him that he is near the Tube: “The District Line is closest.” Bond emerges in a single tunnel. A train bears down on him, which he evades. But it appears to be 1996 Stock. 

007 then finds himself in Temple station. Green and yellow lines adorn the platform walls to denote Circle and District service. On board the next departing 1996 Stock train, the carriage number is 96069 and the line diagram grey. The Jubilee Line is incriminated. 

Silva alights at the next stop, Embankment. Bond gives chase again and soon the two of them are back in tunnels. Silva blows a hole in the roof through which a train crashes and returns to Embankment; the entrance can be seen in the background as a police vehicle picks him up. Bond, having survived the wreck, runs beneath the Tube to Westminster, where he emerges from an exit and runs up Whitehall. 

The station progression is correct, but really, anyone who has ever travelled on the District Line should notice the glaring errors. The whole thing just looks wrong. 

District Dave’s passengers note that Bond is required to end up at Westminster in the story. Thus, setting it on the Jubilee Line would have made much more sense; Bond could have been put at Southwark, chased Silva through Waterloo and then gone to Westminster. 

It is a shame that the production team did not appreciate the detail of famous British transport in the iconic franchise of a British secret agent."

Have you seen Skyfall?  Did anything about the Tube's depiction jar with you?  Or were you happy enough to let the film makers have creative licence?

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