On portraying the mysterious new Bond villain Safin, he said: “If I went in there and tried to make a carbon copy of someone, what joy or fun would that be for anybody?
“I guess that may be a lesson I learned from Mr Mercury. If it’s not original, then why bother?”
He continued: “I’ve pocketed some things from some of my favorites. But I tried to every day imbue this character with something I thought made sense for the character, but might also at the same time be shocking and unnerving.” The actor also explained that he spent a lot of time with dialogue coach William Conacher on the Bond film to create a distinctive voice for his villain.
“I wanted to create something that we couldn’t quite peg from any particular part of the world,” he added.
Meanwhile, No Time to Die director Cary Joji Fukunaga recently teased Safin’s motivations, saying it’s a trait of a villain to “see themselves higher than everyone else”.
“They’re pulling the strings,” he continued. “There’s an entitlement there, and a playfulness. So yeah, I guess all the great villains play God.”