Ten years ago, Queen Elizabeth II and Daniel Craig had one of the most memorable Olympics moments ever at the opening ceremony for the 2012 London Games, and the queen’s family had no idea she was going to be a part of it.
To commemorate the 10th anniversary of the London Olympics, BBC 4’s “Reunion” spoke with several members of the production team behind the opening ceremony, which featured a video package commemorating the 50th anniversary of the James Bond film series. In it, Craig, playing Bond, escorts the queen to a helicopter to perform a base jump over London Stadium.
“The queen never told her family she was doing it. That was one of the stipulations, that she agreed to be part of it,” production stage manager Sam Hunter told BBC. “So, if you actually see when she comes and she takes her seat, you can see her family go, ‘Ah, nice one.’”
Oscar-nominated filmmaker Stephen Daldry, who was an executive producer for the opening ceremony, said that to honor the Queen’s request to keep her family in the dark, the production team had to keep her participation secret even from some members of Prime Minister David Cameron’s cabinet, some of whom had regular contact with Buckingham Palace.
“What was hard was that you didn’t really want to say much to the Cabinet because you didn’t know how secure they were,” he said.
The London opening ceremony was watched by over one billion people worldwide and set records for the most watched Olympics opening ceremony in both the U.K. and the United States. Watch Queen Elizabeth II and Daniel Craig’s big moment here.