Hatton Garden Job’s Ronnie Thompson says ‘ultimate goal’ is to direct James Bond

Emma Powell

​Forget the BAFTA’s or the Academy Awards – director Ronnie Thompson says his “ultimate goal” is to direct a James Bond movie.

Essex-born Thompson joked that he will happily retire once he has made his mark on the British spy franchise.

“It’s the ultimate goal,” he told the Standard. “I always say, when I’ve got to James Bond then I’ll retire – after I’ve done two or three of them.”

Thompson’s latest film saw him take on the infamous Hatton Garden heist, a story he believes was “waiting to be made” on the big screen.

Breaking in: Matthew Goode drills through the underground vault

The heist, dubbed the biggest burglary in English legal history, saw a gang of elderly criminals pose as workmen to drill into the exclusive vault at the Hatton Garden Safe Deposit company before making off with £14 million of valuables over Easter weekend in 2015.

Speaking about taking on such a huge story early on in his career, Thompson said: “Whenever you make a film you’re opening up yourself, so with a story of this magnitude I wanted to do it justice. The side of the story I’ve decided to tell is the funny side to it.

“My interpretation is crime caper. We live in a peculiar time now with Brexit so I wanted to make a film that people can enjoy.”

Thompson – whose credits include Tower Block and I Am Soldier – dismissed concerns that the film glamourises crime, and told critics: “I’d say you’re far too bored and have too much time on your hands to say such a thing. If you want to see the darker side watch a documentary or read a book. My interpretation is a crime caper. If you don’t like it don’t watch it.”

'Diamond wheezers': Phil Daniels, Larry Lamb, David Calder, Matthew Goode and Clive Russell

The film boasts an all-star British cast with Larry Lamb as ringleader Brian Reader, 78, Phil Daniels as Danny Jones, 62, Clive Russell as driver John “Kenny” Collins, 76, and David Calder as “muscle” Terry Perkins, 69.

Thompson praised the cast for being “ultimate professionals” and said “a lot of young actors could take a leaf out of their book”.

The gang, who became known as the “diamond wheezers” are currently serving sentences after admitting to conspiracy to burgle at Woolwich crown court last year.

Jones, Collins and Perkins were jailed for seven years, while Reader was sentenced to six years and three months.

Their fifth accomplice, played by Matthew Goode, who was simply known as ‘Basil’, has never been found.

The Hatton Garden Job is out today.

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