“Everybody knew how to play poker around that table, except for one, Daniel,” Mikkelsen said. “He had no clue. He sucked. And it was the worst thing ever that he, of all people, had to beat [my character] and win all my money. It was like, ‘This is wrong.’ Well I got him back with the rope, so that’s good.”
Ah, the rope. Great. Good to relive that cinematic moment.
Naturally, it’s a little odd to learn that James Bond is bad at poker, but 1) acting! and 2) it’s possible that Craig has since learned how to play poker really well, and this is a long con wherein Mikkelsen convinces people he’s an easy mark but he’s actually sandbagging to get you to up the ante. Beware. Actors are crafty.
Mikkelsen also praised his co-star, noting that he was game to improvise and test boundaries when it came to their scenes together (especially that torture scene). He also said out loud what we’ve known since the movie came out in 2006:
“The [poker] hands we are playing are insane, so if you’re a poker player, you’ll go, ‘What?’ We just wanted to make the nature of the betting believable, but the hands obviously had to be easily recognizable for an audience that doesn’t play poker, so they were quite crazy hands.”
An ace in the flop and the river, giving Le Chiffre a full boat, another player a lesser full boat, another player a flush, and Bond a royale flush? Sure, Jan. Talk about bad beats.