An action sequence aboard a train planned to be filmed in India for the upcoming twenty-third James Bond film will now be shot in South Africa. The Times Of India is reporting that plans for the filming fell through due to concerns over safety and security issues.
The Times Of India quotes Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi as saying, “While the Bond franchise is important for us, so is the safety of people. God forbid if something untoward happened, people would not stop blaming us.”
This is not an entirely surprising development, as we told you earlier this month that India’s Railroad Ministry had concerns over the action sequence, which at one point would involve a motorcycle jumping on top of a moving train. They also voiced concerns over the depiction of Indians riding on top of trains.
According to the Times Of India report, another factor that may have played into the cancellation of the shooting was concern over the production’s request to “lock off the lines for seven-eight hours a day for seven days in a row.” While that seems like a reasonable amount of time to shoot an action sequence, it could have proved a severe inconvenience to those who would normally rely on the service. (India is fairly spread out and rail travel is more common there.)
The train sequence, and possibly other scenes initially planned to be shot in India, will very probably now be shot in South Africa when the film goes into production early next year.