Andrew Scott was almost the main villain in Spectre, Sam Mendes reveals

The James Bond director reveals we could have seen a 007 v Moriarty showdown, with Scott's character Max Denbigh originally outranking Christoph Waltz's Franz Oberhauser

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If you’ve seen the latest James Bond film Spectre (look away if you haven’t), you’ll know that Andrew Scott’s Max Denbigh, aka MI5 boss C, turned out to be a bit of a wrong ‘un.

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Teaming up with Christoph Waltz’s Blofeld to spy on the world’s data, he eventually met a sticky end at the hands of Bond and Ralph Fiennes’ M. None of us were that sorry to see him go. 

But now it turns out that Denbigh once had a far greater importance to the plot of Spectre: according to director Sam Mendes, he was originally supposed to be the mastermind behind the whole thing.

Speaking to Empire film magazine about the character, Mendes revealed that early drafts of the Spectre script had Denbigh pulling the strings throughout, only revealed as the true Big Bad towards the end of the film.

We know – it’s pretty shocking.

“There was a long period where it flipped and it turned out that he was the person who was running the show,” Mendes said.

If you were to cast someone who appeared innocuous only to emerge as the true Machiavellian villain behind, who better than the man who performed that role with such aplomb as Sherlock’s Moriarty?

This change in the plot of Spectre could also explain an oddity in one of the film’s trailers, where a line is apparently spoken by Christoph Waltz but sounds like a completely different voice altogether. Listen closely from 1:34.

The line in question – “You came across me so many times, yet you never saw me” – was eventually spoken by Waltz’s Blofeld in the finished film.

However, in the trailer, doesn’t it sound a bit more like Andrew Scott doing a slightly German accent? Was Andrew Scott actually supposed to be Blofeld, only to have a last minute change in the edit?

Denbigh’s change to a secondary villain probably took place before Scott was cast, let alone when they started filming or released a trailer, so the strange voice is almost certainly just a coincidence.

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Even so, we can’t help but wonder what it would have been like if Moriarty was behind it all along…