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17 October 2005
EXLUSIVE: I'M THE REAL JAMES BLAND
By Pete Samson

A REAL-life James Bland yesterday told new 007 Daniel Craig: "I'd make a better Bond than you."

The Mirror branded Daniel "James Bland" on Saturday when he bored the world's press after landing the plum role.

And the proper James Bland said yesterday: "I'm a massive Bond fan but I was very unimpressed by Daniel. He must be the most boring 007 ever. He doesn't look like Bond or talk like Bond.

"I certainly won't be watching the new film."

Nervy Craig gave an embarrassing first interview as he failed to deliver any of the super-cool spy's legendary charm.

Giving short boring answers while chewing gum, all he had to say when asked why he wanted to take on the role was: "Why not?"

The real Bland, a dad of two from Tyneside, insisted he would make a more charismatic star despite his uninspiring name.

James, nine years younger than 37-year-old Daniel, also serves Queen and country as a member of the 1st Regiment Royal Horse Artillery.

He says he was turned off when the actor said arriving for his press conference by speedboat had "scared the s**t" out of him.

James even thinks he looks the part of the dashing womaniser more than blond Layer Cake star Daniel.

James admits he got a bit of stick from his squaddie mates over the Mirror's jokey headline.

But he adds: "Everyone says I'd make a better Bond than him. I'm a bit of a cheeky chappie, a bit of a charmer - and I look more like Bond should too.

"I certainly wouldn't be scared by a bit of water."

He said even his 54-year-old dad and 41-year-old uncle - both Blands with the middle name James - are more interesting than dull Daniel.

James, who now lives in Tidworth, Wilts, insisted: "They've both got more go about them."

He also claims he would have been better at responding to questions from the media.

He added: "Daniel just said, 'Why not?' when they asked him why he wanted to to play Bond.

"What sort of an answer is that? I'd have said, 'I could tell you, but then I'd then have to kill you'.

"He's a disgrace to the name Bland, let alone Bond. He needs to realise Bond is a hero to his fans and get into the role. He wouldn't even say who he wanted as his Bond girl.

"I'd have gone straight away for Catherine Zeta-Jones. She'd be my ideal."

With Bond-style reflexes, James hastily added: "Apart from my missus of course."

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