BEVERLY HILLS, CALIFORNIA – “I am so bad that I’m taking the heat off of James Bond,” laughs Javier Bardem, whose MI6 operative-turned-cyberterrorist in the film “Skyfall” is winning plaudits as the best 007 villain in a decade.
What the Spanish actor is getting at is that his character, Raoul Silva, is so rotten, so colorful and so memorable that he’s deflecting much of the usual criticism of Bond’s character as sexist, violent and outdated. If anyone knows the intricacies of playing a villain, it’s Bardem. The 43-year-old won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor for his role as a ruthless hitman in “No Country for Old Men” (2007). A longtime fan of the 007 series, he thinks the latest chapter is especially interesting.