^ Apparently. And Kevin Spacey was also up for it. Hard to see a role that could potentially be played by all three of them. Though, then again, the Sean Bean role in Goldeneye was originally intended for Hopkins, as you say.
Not exactly. In the "Hopkins" draft, Hopkins was to play Bond's mentor
(read: Bernard Lee's M!), who turned to villainy. Frankly, that would have been a LOT darker--perhaps too dark for a Bond film, as we knew and loved the character.
Almost like Jim Phelps turning out to be the villain in Mission: Impossible,
"The saying implies but does not name the effective agency of its supposed utopia.... 'Needs and abilities' are, of course, subjective. So the operative statement may be reduced to 'the State shall take, the State shall give'."