Johnny English


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Johnny English (2003) is a comic movie parodying the James Bond secret agent genre, starring Rowan Atkinson as the incompetent British spy of the title, with John Malkovich, Natalie Imbruglia and Ben Miller.

The screenplay was written by Bond writers Neal Purvis and Robert Wade, with William Davies and the film is directed by former Bread actor Peter Howitt.

The character of Johnny English himself is based on a similar character called Richard Latham who was played by Atkinson in a series of British television commercials for Barclaycard. The character of Bough (pronounced 'Boff') was retained from the commercials though another actor, Henry Naylor, played the part in the commercials. Some of the gags from the commercials made it into the film, including English incorrectly identifying a waiter, and the ballpoint pen scene (Latham inadvertently 'shot' himself with a tranquilizer dart which fired from the gadget pen when Latham attempted to use it during a demonstration to a class of spy recruits, saying as he collapsed "take over for a moment will you Bough").

A second Johnny English movie is currently being written, though no date has been set for release.

When a plot to steal the Crown Jewels is revealed, Britain puts its secret agents on the case. Not very soon after, however, almost all of them are killed. Johnny English, an inept worker at British intelligence (MI7) is summoned as a last resort. Together with his assistant Bough, he manages to discover the person behind the plot, Frenchman Pascal Sauvage, whose family once had a claim to the throne.

Sauvage, believing that the crown should have gone to him instead of the Queen, has hatched an evil plan to become King of the United Kingdom: steal the Crown Jewels, make an impostor of the Archbishop of Canterbury, and have him proclaim Sauvage as King. English's clumsy efforts pay off, and Sauvage's plan is foiled; undeterred, he uses his backup scheme.

Meanwhile, English reports the plan to MI7, who naturally don't believe him. English gatecrashes a party held by Sauvage, and is promptly dismissed by his superiors. Sauvage concludes that English knows too much and has his henchmen enter Sandringham House and force the Queen to sign a letter of abdication renouncing her family's claim to the British throne. The Queen, at first, refused to sign even if it means being killed, but when the threat was turned to one of her corgis, she signs. Thus, leaving the post free for Sauvage. Sauvage is informed by British officials the day after that, as the closest surviving relative of the Queen, the position of monarch now belongs to him.

English infiltrates Sauvage's chateau (castle) in France on his own and overhears Sauvage's proposal of turning the United Kingdom into a giant prison once he is king. At Sauvage's coronation, English arrives and accuses him of treason. While he is trying to rescue the crown jewels from Sauvage, he is inadvertently crowned king himself; he then places Sauvage under arrest, reveals the schemes to the public, and abdicates in favor of the Queen.

* Although in the movie English carries a gun, he never succeeds in firing it.
* The movie grossed $158,919,243 internationally.
* The party scene features a real-life string quartet called bond.
* The film has many celebrity fans, including legendary tennis coach Abbas-aboy-Bowen.[citation needed]
* Atkinson starred in an unofficial James Bond film in 1983, Never Say Never Again.
* The song that English sings along to in his bathroom is "Does Your Mother Know", and that he uses for the "sonic chanting" is "Thank You For The Music", both by ABBA.
* The denial of Sauvage's family's claim to the throne references the Jacobite succession. This is never mentioned explicitly (since the Jacobite line still bears real-life descendents), though Sauvage has a portrait of Bonny Prince Charlie in his office, and the Jacobite family (eg the Old Pretender) lived for a time in France before and after their failed invasions of England in the 18th century.
* The total depopulating of the UK comically suggested here parallels that of Diego Garcia.
* That Sauvage will be "England's first French king since 1066" (ie since William the Conqueror) as stated in Tarrant's radio broadcast is innaccurate - William was Norman-French not straight French.

* Agent One's throwing his coat onto the hatstand (and English's failed attempt to imitate it) is in imitation of James Bond's throwing his hat onto the hatstand.
* The car chase with the car in grapples is a parody of more conventional car chases in Bond films.
* Bough is a pun on boff, an English nickname for boffins.
* English's organisation is called MI7, a parody of MI5 and MI6. However, MI7 does exist, but in a different form.
o The head of MI7 here is named Pegasus.

* The news broadcast at the end of the film claims that high treason still carries the death penalty. In fact, since the coming into force of the Human Rights Act 1998 in 2000, the United Kingdom abolished capital punishment completely.
* Sauvage's face is seen being printed onto stamps and paper money, though this seems an unlikely compression of usual time if his coronation is happening less than a week after the Queen's abdication. The issuing of commemorative stamps in this short time, however, is more realistic.
* Trevor McDonald's broadcast states that the identity of the agent who saved the queen is being kept secret, whereas a copy of The Times being read in the post-credits sequence shows English's name and face - the former is more likely, though the two are not entirely incompatible.

* The need for the Archbishop of Canterbury in an English coronation is true, though the need for a bishop for each of England, Wales and Scotland is inaccurate.
* It seems unlikely that Pegasus (a top-secret role) would sit in the front row with the Prime Minister.
* The use of the music Zadok the Priest, and some of the coronation service text, are correct.
* The footage of Concorde and the Red Arrows is documentary footage either from Concorde's anniversary, or from a royal jubilee.
* The date given for the coronation is Thursday August 5th.

* The letter of abdication given to the Queen gives her title as "Elizabeth the second, of Great Britain, Ireland and the British dominions...." The Queen is monarch of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The Republic of Ireland is now a separate sovereign state, the head of state of which is the President of Ireland.
* During the movie, the Queen's face is never shown. She is always shot from behind, except for once when she signs the letter of abdication, but we only see her hand.
* When the Queen signs the letter of abdication, she signs with her right hand but in reality she is left handed.
* The conferring of a knighthood, even in exceptional circumstances such as this, would usually occur in the birthday or new year honours list rather than immediately afterwards.

* Some scenes were filmed at Canary Wharf in London - indeed, the film duplicates the single real tower into two identical ones (albeit on the real site) for the fictional London Hospital and Sauvage's headquarters.
* The scenes set in Westminster Abbey were filmed in St Albans Abbey (though this conection is solely implied through the dialogue - for this footage is never intercut with footage of the real abbey's exterior).
* The exteriors in the first credits sequence scene is Burghley House or Hardwick Hall.
* 'Sandringham' is Hughenden Manor.
* The exterior and interior of MI7's headquarters which English enters at the start is Freemasons' Hall, London, which is also used as Thames House (the MI5 headquarters) in Spooks.
* The scenes where Johnny English drives into Dover, Kent along the A20 (with Dover Castle in the background) and then enters the Port of Dover (with a "Dover Ferry Terminal" sign, Dover's Athol Terrace and the White Cliffs of Dover in the background) to catch a ferry to France, were all shot on location.

Sound Track

1. "A Man For All Seasons" - Robbie Williams
2. Theme from Johnny English
3. Russian Affairs
4. A Man of Sophistication
5. "Kismet" - bond
6. Truck Chase
7. "The Only Ones" - Moloko
8. Parachute Drop
9. Pascal's Evil Plan
10. "Theme from Johnny English (Salsa Version)" - bond
11. Off the Case
12. Cafe Conversation
13. Into Pascal's Lair
14. "Does Your Mother Know" - ABBA
15. For England
16. Riviera Hideaway
17. Agent No. 1Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, with no Front-Cover Texts, and with no Back-Cover Texts.
Virtual Magic is a human knowledge database blog. Text Based On Information From Wikipedia, Under The GNU Free Documentation License. Copyright (c) 2007 Virtual Magic. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.1 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts and no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license is included in the section entitled "GNU Free Documentation License".

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