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Lord Alfred Tennyson, Skyfall, and the London Olympics

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#1 MkB



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Posted 14 September 2013 - 06:10 PM

Hi there! 


Just popping in to share something... 


I've just read here: http://www.uniofsurr...d-the-olympics/

that Lord Alfred Tennyson's exact same verses were selected as the inscription for a wall in the athlete’s village London Olympics, and featured prominently in Skyfall: 


That which we are, we are;

One equal temper of heroic hearts,

Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will

To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield


Since the 2012 Olympics were also a memorable Bond moment, with the Queen's one and only appearance in a fiction, it made me wonder if the choice of those specific verses in Skyfall might be somehow linked to their presence at the London Olylmpics? 

The blog post I linked to mentions that the verses were selected for the athete's village as early as Sping 2011, so it was probably early enough to give the idea of using it, and also I guess that it was a time when the Broccolis and Bond team in general were already in touch with the Olympics team, to negociate the Bond cameo. 


Of course it's a very famous poem, and it could just be coincidence. 

#2 Dustin



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Posted 14 September 2013 - 09:35 PM

That's a most intriguing thought there, MkB.

Granted, Tennyson's poem is surely a standard of English literature. But is it really something that would be in the 'for further use' drawer of the modern professional script writer? Without some kind of outside influence pointing this way? I'm not sure. On balance I would say some kind of - loose - connection could have lead to the use for M's speech. It's an odd scene for a Bond film, a recital intercut with action scenes and thus partially from the off. Emotionally it's one of the very most effective scenes in SF and in Bond films period. I could imagine it may have started with coverage about the Olympic Village.