Danny Boyle lights up BBC in Salford

Mark Lawson and Danny Boyle Mark Lawson and Danny Boyle with the sign of Wonder

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Danny Boyle switched on a neon artwork at the BBC's offices in Salford on Monday night.

The Oscar-winning film-maker, who directed the Olympic opening ceremony at London 2012, lit up the sign during a Radio 4 Front Row special in which he did his first major interview since the Games.

The Olympic ceremony, titled "Isles of Wonder", was inspired by William Shakespeare's play The Tempest and Boyle chose the word "Wonder" again for the Salford sign, providing the template with his own handwriting.

He told Front Row the artwork was "a nice way to remember" the Olympic show and he hoped the word's meaning and "connection to culture continues to run through our lives".

The Lancashire-born director, who used to work at BBC Northern Ireland, joked the other word he could have used was "believe" but it may sound "dangerously messianic".

Front Row producer Ekene Akalawu told Ariel the programme asked Boyle as a "tribute" to the success of the Olympic opening ceremony, which was watched by more than 24 million viewers in the UK.

James Bond and Queen Danny Boyle says he won't make a full-length 007 film

During the live Radio 4 broadcast, the director - who helped bring the Queen and James Bond together in a short film for the ceremony - dismissed speculation that he would make a full-length 007 film.

"No, I'm not very good with huge amounts of money…I'm much better with a smaller amount of money and trying to make it go a long way," he said.

When asked by Front Row presenter Mark Lawson whether he would be knighted in the forthcoming New Year's honours list, he replied: "I'm very proud to be an equal citizen and I think that's what the opening ceremony was actually all about."

The sign of Wonder now shines from the veranda of BBC Dock House across MediaCityUK, which will host the blind auditions for The Voice from Thursday, and will remain lit until January 6.

It also marks 100 years since neon was first used in signage and was made by Yorkshire-based company Neon Workshops. Last year, programme presenter John Wilson switched on the temporary sign "Listen" for Front Row at the Salford offices.

You can listen to the programme on the Front Row website.

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