BOND 25 TIMELINE PART SIX: HOLDING PATTERN
After yet another release date delay, No Time to Die goes into another holding pattern.
No reason was given in a Jan. 21, 2021 announcement. Still, by this time, it’s clear the 25th James Bond film won’t be seen until COVID-19 finally releases the globe from its deadly grip.
Jan. 21, 2021: That didn’t take long. The Bond Experience gets on the board with a reaction video.
Jan. 22, 2021: Calvin Dyson weighs in with a reaction video.
Jan. 22, 2021: Haphazard Stuff is out with his own reaction video.
Jan. 22, 2021: David Leigh of The James Bond Dossier makes the case that this may not be the final delay.
Jan. 25, 2021: The Sun publishes a story saying that No Time to Die sponsors/product placement clients are seeking reshoots of scenes where their products are featured in the film. “Details of the big-money tie-ins are kept under wraps, but it is understood that mobile phone company Nokia has provided handsets that will feature in the film — while other lucrative deals include Omega watches, Bollinger champagne and Adidas footwear.”
Jan. 25-26, 2021: I guess it was a slow news day. The Express (on Jan. 25) and Screen Rant (on Jan. 26) both write stories based on David Leigh’s video above about how No Time to Die may ultimately be delayed to 2022. Talk about being an “influencer.”
Jan. 27, 2021: Rami Malek appears on Good Morning America to publicize a new project. Toward the end (4:36 mark of the video below), he acknowledges the latest No Time to Die delay but adds it’s great we’ll see in the theater. He, of course, also praises Daniel Craig (as he has on multiple occasions before).
Jan. 29, 2021: Ralph Fiennes tells Entertainment Tonight he’s frustrated he hasn’t had a chance to No Time to Die yet. Get in line, dude.
Jan. 30, 2021: Forbes publishes an online story that says Amazon has had “preliminary” talks about acquiring Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Bond’s home studio. That data point is part of a broader examination of why MGM isn’t likely to get the kind of price ($10 billion) that it wants. The story references how Danjaq/Bond controls much of the Bond franchise and that would complicate talks.
Feb. 2, 2021: @JB007_news discovers that three prominent members of the No Time to Die cast (Rami Malek, Lashana Lynch and Ana de Armas) have deleted their official Twitter accounts. The significance? I have no idea. But it’s another oddity in a project full of them.
Update: Apparently Malek’s acccount has been down for some time.
Feb. 4, 2021: Not directly Bond 25 related, Ralph Fiennes tells the Game Radar website that he’d really, really like to come back as M in Bond 26.
Feb. 12, 2021: The Sun reports that Mission: Impossible 7 has been forced to shut down production in the Middle East to fly cast and crew back to the U.K. ahead of tighter COVID-19 restrictions. This raises the possibility of a delay for M:I7. That could help No Time to Day. Currently, M:I has a November release date just six weeks after NTTD.
Feb. 15, 2021: The Deadline entertainment news site reports that Mission: Impossible 7 and 8 are no longer filming back-to-back. Deadline says the drama of the Sun story is inaccurate. But the original plan for M:I 7-8 was to film both at once so they could be released a year apart. Once upon a time, Eon had a similar plan for Bonds 24 (SPECTRE) and 25 (No Time to Die) but Daniel Craig vetoed the idea.
Feb. 16, 2021: @JB007_news carries a tweet that translates a tiny bit of a German CQ story about Christoph Waltz. Date on the tweet is Feb. 16 because it was past midnight in Germany.
Update: Another tweet with a bit of translation from the GQ article.
Feb. 16, 2021: The U.K. Metro outlet has a story quoting an analyst at Boxoffice Pro as saying the long delay may benefit No Time to Die. The idea is there will be pent-up demand to see big movies in a theater whenever the pandemic ends.
Feb. 20, 2021: On Twitter, @antovolk turns up an announcement that the Russian premiere of No Time to Die is scheduled for Sept. 30. It’s another sign of how that Oct. 8 worldwide release date always had a big hole in it.
Feb. 23, 2021: The Film Distributors’ Association website lists No Time to Die’s U.K. release date as Sept. 30. h/t/ @antonvolk. It’s another indication that the Bond film franchise, while it likes Yankee dollars, doesn’t much care for its U.S. fan base.
Feb. 24, 2021: More international release dates for No Time to Die tumble out. Universal (handling international release of the 25th James Bond film), confirms the Sept. 30 release date in the U.K. Other places — except the U.S., of course — are getting a similar date. See comment above how the Bond franchise feels about the U.S. audience — great to pick up money, but that’s about it.
Feb. 24, 2021: The Gleaner in Jamaica reports that Jamaican reggae artiste Damion Darrel Warren, known as Teacha Dee, has been told that his song Rasafari Way was chosen for use in To Time to Die. The performer puts out a tweet about The Gleaner’s story.
Feb. 24, 2021: Variety publishes a story about how the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic continues to mess with marketing strategies of major movies. No Time to Die has a prominent image (the lead photo is a Daniel Craig publicity photo) but there’s little hard information. There’s more, for example, about F9 and Black Widow.
Feb. 25, 2021: James Bond Brasil, citing Universal, says in a tweet that Brazil now has a Sept. 30 release date for No Time to Die.
Feb. 25, 2021: Oh, good grief! The Deadline entertainment news site says it has been told by MGM that the international release release pretty much starts everywhere on Sept. 30 while the U.S. is stuck with Oct. 8. Uncouth, unsophisticated Yanks apparently don’t deserve the Sept. 30 date.
March 8, 2021: MGM puts out three tweets suggesting it has changed its logo. One of them includes clips from current MGM projects, including several from No Time to Die:
EXPANDED ENTRY: Adweek has a story. It says Leo the Lion will remain.
March 14, 2021: No Time to Die’s title song wins a Grammy for “Best Song Written for Visual Media.” Here’s the announcement on Twitter:
March 21, 2021: The Sunday Times runs an article about the “never-ending” wait for No Time to Die. It’s behind a pay wall except for a short preview.
Week of March 29: MGM finally reports fourth-quarter 2020 results and holds an investor call. The company says almost nothing about No Time to Die, just referring to it as among its film lineup.
April 3, 2021: The Sun runs a column of entertainment items. One says Daniel Craig plans to do a whirlwind of in-person appearances to promote No Time to Die despite COVID-19. It says MGM and Universal still think the movie can generate $1 billion in box office. The Daily Mail summarizes The Sun’s story but writes it up bigger.
April 14, 2021: Variety publishes a story about the continuing turmoil at Annapurna Pictures, co-owner (with MGM) of United Artists Releasing. This passage caught my eye. It suggests the joint venture may not last that much longer:
Renewed interest from distributors could help the film unit, given that Annapurna is free to seek new partners outside of United Artists Releasing, the wobbly joint venture it sealed with MGM in late 2017. While Ellison has the option to release films anywhere, sources said she was unusually deferential to UAR in the negotiations for “On the Count of Three,” underscoring how dependent she’ll be on the group if no one steps forward to help her place the film in theaters. The pact was set to expire in 2021, but sources said MGM has opted for another year of releasing its own films through UAR (including the upcoming James Bond adventure “No Time to Die”). To extract itself from the agreement would be more costly than it’s worth, one source said, especially as MGM continues to seek a splashy sale, which it is rumored to be pursuing.
April 17, 2021: The Mirror publishes a story claiming No Time to Die’s studio partners are planning a 10-million pound (about $13.8 million) premiere for the 25th James Bond film. The event would be “the world’s most extravagant premiere ever.” The U.K. this week ended a three-month COVID-19 lockdown. The premiere will be on Oct. 8, according to the Mirror. That’s interesting, given the movie is supposed to be out on Sept. 30.
April 26, 2021: The Express publishes a long, rambling story collecting quotes from Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli apparently from various sources. A sample:
Ms Broccoli believed moviegoers connected with Bond because remains an “ordinary” and “regular person” unlike “superheroes”.
It should be noted that the Bond series has copied the Marvel Studios emphasis on continuity. Even earlier, Skyfall, adapted tropes from Christopher Nolan’s Batman movies.
May 2, 2021: Vogue publishes a story about Billie Eilish that will be the cover story of the June issue of the U.K. edition. No Time to Die is mentioned briefly. Eilish goes for a new look in the photos.
Update: Here’s the Vogue cover:
May 8, 2021: The Licence to Queer website publishes an article about another song will be included in the movie. The site turned up an Instagram post by a late singer’s estate. To avoid even a hint of a spoiler this entry leaves out the singer’s name as well as the song title. The Licence to Queer article, by Lane Bonertz, has background about the performer and song.
May 17, 2021: Variety reports that Amazon is negotiating to buy MGM, Bond’s home studio, for about $9 billion.
May 18, 2021: Being James Bond convenes a 20-minute livestream with Jack Lugo of James Bond Radio and, somehow, me.
May 19, 2021: Calvin Dyson posts his own video reaction:
May 20, 2021: MGM reports first-quarter financial results. On an investor call, Chief Financial Officer Kenneth Kay says executives are aware of “speculation in the media” about a possible transaction. Kay doesn’t mention Amazon and states executives won’t take questions about a deal. No such questions are asked.
May 21, 2021: Variety does a follow-up story saying the Bond franchise, and Danjaq/Eon’s control over key aspects, is a complicating factor in the Amazon-MGM talks. Essentially, the Bond situation makes MGM hard to value. Variety probably should have called any number of Bond fan sites and gotten that information sooner.
May 21, 2021: Deadline: Hollywood, after waiting four days, decides to do its own Amazon-MGM story.
May 24, 2021: The Wall Street Journal publishes a story saying Amazon is near a deal to acquire MGM. It has the same $9 billion price that Variety had a week earlier.
May 24, 2021: Bloomberg runs a story matching the Journal while adding a detail: An Amazon-MGM deal could be announced as early as Tuesday, May 25.
May 24, 2021: Vox posts an analysis of why Amazon would be interested in MGM. Essentially, Amazon has invested a lot of money in Hollywood but still hasn’t really gotten a toehold yet. The story also raises the possibility that regulators will give the deal a close look because Amazon is big in other areas.
May 25, 2021: No sign of an Amazon-MGM deal late Tuesday night. The Wall Street Journal does a follow-up story, a kind of “what does it mean?” article. There’s one passage deep in the story that won’t surprise to Bond fans: “Amazon would likely also have to forge a relationship with producers Michael Wilson and Barbara Broccoli about future “James Bond” projects. The duo, who are half-brother and half-sister, essentially control the creative and business direction of the franchise.”
May 26, 2021: Amazon announces it has agreed to buy MGM for $8.45 billion. The press release has a time stamp of 8:33 a.m. New York time.
May 26, 2021: Calvin Dyson has a reaction video. NOTE: Not to pick on this one video, but Amazon won’t complete the purchase of MGM until it receives regulatory approval. I feel like I’ve been screaming about this small, BUT VERY IMPORTANT POINT. But Bond fans just ignore it. OK. I am going to keep repeating that point BECAUSE IT’S TRUE!
May 27, 2021: The Express publishes an interview with Investis Digital CEO Don Scales, who has been involved with mergers and acquisitions over his career. He says Amazon may make changes but acknowledges not knowing specifics of the Amazon-MGM agreement. The Express plays this up. By the way, companies rarely spend billions of dollars on a deal and then make no changes.
May 27, 2021: The Wall Street Journal publishes a story about Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson and how they’ll retain a lot of power over James Bond even after Amazon completes its MGM purchase. The story said the duo rebuffed buyout efforts by Apple and Universal sometime in the “past several years.”
Week of June 13, 2021: Matthew Belloni, a former editor at The Hollywood Reporter who has joined a digital media startup, writes in a newsletter that MGM may push for a Best Picture Oscar nomination for No Time to Die. Screen capture is shown below.
June 22, 2021: The Wall Street Journal reports that the U.S. Federal Trade Commission plans to investigate Amazon’s $8.45 billion acquisition of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.
June 29, 2021: James King, who had been hosting an official No Time to Die podcast, says on Twitter, that he has just interviewed lead NTTD composer Hans Zimmer. In response to a question, he says the interview is for the podcast. “Yes. Launches soon.”
July 6, 2021: Deadline publishes a feature story about Lea Seydoux. Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson sing Seydoux’s praises. “Léa’s portrayal of Dr. Madeleine Swann explores the complexity of what it is like to be in a relationship with James Bond. “Given the background of her character being the daughter of a Spectre assassin, she understands Bond’s world, the dark forces that he is up against, and his psyche. We wanted to challenge Bond emotionally and Léa’s character does this in No Time to Die.”
July 9, 2021: The Information, a subscription news site, publishes a story saying the U.S. Federal Trade Commission has opened an “in-depth investigation” of Amazon’s pending purchase of MGM. The story is behind a paywall except for a short preview. The probe, assuming it’s true, means it’s unlikely the $8.45 billion deal will be completed by No Time to Die’s current Sept. 30 U.K./Oct. 8 U.S. release date.
July 11, 2021: The newsletter by Matthew Belloni, a former editor at The Hollywood Reporter, describes “intrigue” at Amazon and MGM. Amazon executives are described as unhappy with a July 6 New York Times articles about MGM film executives Michael De Luca and Pamela Abdy. “Amazon and the tech companies that run Hollywood these days absolutely hate this posturing crap,” Belloni wrote.
July 15, 2021: Aston Martin introduces a revamped Valhalla supercar. Its design, engine and more are different than the Valhalla that appears in No Time To Die.
July 16, 2021: Total Film publishes an article with behind-the-scenes details about No Time to Die. Highlights include Cary Fukunaga saying he wined and dined Barbara Broccoli *before* Danny Boyle was hired. Also, Daniel Craig describes NTTD’s theme as “Love and family.”
July 20, 2021: Will No Time to Die make its current release date? Beats me. But Calvin Dyson raises the question in a new fan video.
July 20, 2021: Harper’s Bazaar publishes a story about No Time to Die’s Ana de Armas. It’s mostly about beauty products. But de Armas, like many other Bond actresses of recent decades, mentions how her character is different from all those other Bond women. “Paloma is actually a really complete character. Cary [Joji Fukunaga, director] created her from zero and he asked me if I wanted to do it. It was very appealing from the very beginning, when he was telling me what he was going to do with the character. I was very excited, and I did feel like she was different, unique. She’s definitely something else that I don’t think we’ve seen in other Bond girls in previous movies. She’s a lot of fun – very active, very badass!”
July 21, 2021: I’m not exactly sure when this came out but MGM and United Artists Releasing released a tweaked U.S. No Time to Die poster. The MGM font has been updated to match the updated MGM logo. The poster proclaims the movie will be only in theaters in Octobers. (We’ll see.)
July 26, 2021: The official James Bond Twitter feed puts out a tweet with 30 seconds of No Time To Die highlights.
July 30, 2021: Deadline: Hollywood reports that the family film Clifford the Big Red Dog has been pulled from a Sept. 17 release because of COVID-19 spread from the Delta variant. Understandably, this raises concern that No Time to Die’s scheduled release date could be changed yet again. Related note: MGM’s next movie, Respect (about singer Aretha Franklin) is due out on Aug. 13. Will a No Time to Die trailer be attached? We’ll see.
Aug. 2, 2021: The MI6 James Bond website publishes a detailed story concerning No Time to Die’s box office prospects. The article indicates they’re not good. Recent “tentpole” films such as F9 and Black Widow have had sharp declines (more than 60 percent) in their second weekends. (Black Widow was also available to Disney Plus Premium.) Meanwhile, No Time to Die’s large production costs would have made a $1 billion box office almost a necessity even before the pandemic. The article includes some return on investment calculations from The James Bond Dossier.
Aug. 8, 2021: The Canadian Broadcasting Corp. carries a No Time to Die spot during the network’s telecast of the closing ceremony of the Tokyo Olympics. I have no idea how important, or not, this is. But it’s the first time I’ve spotted such a commercial this release cycle. It ran sometime between 9:45 a.m. and 9:50 a.m. New York time.
Aug. 10, 2021: The James Bond Club Deutschland page on Facebook spots that the website of The Sincura Group lists No Time to Die’s world premiere as being Sept. 28 at Royal Albert Hall in London.
Update: This news was circulating around for a bit, I am told. See below:
Aug. 10, 2021: The James Bond MI6 website publishes a roundup of various No Time to Die developments. The story includes mention of the CBC commercial on Aug. 8 and the Sincura Group premiere listing. But the story also cites, among things:
–The Odeon and Cineworld U.K. chains have created preview landing pages for ticket buyers, which have a spoiler about Nomi (Lashana Lynch).
–Pre-sales of tickets are underway in Japan.
–The movie has been rated PG-13 in the U.S.
There is more detail in the story, which you can view by CLICKING HERE.
Aug. 11, 2021: The Hollywood Reporter publishes a story about how the Strategic Organizing Center, a coalition of labor unions, sent a letter to the Federal Trade Commission opposing Amazon’s pending $8.45 billion acquisition of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. A copy of the 12-page letter is embedded in the story.
Aug. 12, 2021: James King, the host of the official No Time to Die podcast, again teases the return of that podcast on Twitter. Some are suspicious all the episodes were recorded already. One fan suggestion is King may be recording updated introductions (to note delays, etc.). We’ll see. At this point, people will mostly be waiting for the podcast to go active.
Aug. 12, 2021: The Monaco Life website has a story with details of a Sept. 29 premiere of No Time to Die at the principality. A detail of note:
Proceeds from the premier event will go to a new Princess Grace award for up-and-coming filmmakers in honour of Princess Grace Foundation USA founding member, former Bond and long-time Monaco resident Sir Roger Moore, who passed away in 2017.
Aug. 13 (Friday), 2021: Here’s a fan meme, via The Bond Experience, meant in jest but it reflects general Bond fan anxiety.
Aug. 13, 2021: The No Time to Die soundtrack list is released. The MI6 James Bond website has a copy. The 71-minute soundtrack has 21 selections: 1) Gun Barrel 2) Matera 3) A Message From an Old Friend 4) Square Escape 5) Someone Was Here 6) Not What I Expected 7) What Have You Done? 8) Shouldn’t We Get to Know Each Other First 9) Cuba Chase 10) Back to MI6 11) Good to Have You Back 12) Lovely to See You Again 13) Home 14) Norway Chase 15) Gearing Up 16) Poison Garden 17) The Factory 18) I’ll Be Right Back 19) Opening the Doors 20) Final Ascent 21) No Time to Die
Aug. 16, 2021: The social media accounts of Eon Productions put out a short video featuring costume designer Suttirat Anne Larlarb discussing Safin’s mask. Here’s the twitter version but it was also on Instagram.
The 007 store includes a somewhat expanded plot summary.
Backstory. In No Time To Die Bond has left active service and is enjoying a tranquil life in Jamaica. His peace is short-lived when old friend Felix Leiter turns up asking for help. The mission to rescue a kidnapped scientist turns out to be far more treacherous than expected, leading Bond onto the trail of Safin, a mysterious villain armed with dangerous new technology. But who is this mysterious adversary and why is he always wearing a Noh-style mask?
Aug. 17, 2021: The 007 Store updates the Noh masks with prices: 295 British pounds for the single masks, 695 pounds for the twin set. But the twin set is quickly sold out.
Aug. 18, 2021: The Hollywood Reporter publishes a story about movies and their release date. THR suggests No Time to Die is stuck.
Now, the often-asked question returns: How many other tentpole movies will relocate? Could the list include MGM and EON’s James Bond installment No Time to Die? (It is set to begin opening overseas toward the end of September before landing in the U.S. on Oct. 8.) The film is on the long list of 2020 event pics that have been delayed several times, a nightmare scenario. Sources say No Time to Die may not be able to push yet again at this point, as each restart costs many millions of dollars in marketing. Nor does MGM have a sister streaming service — at least not yet, pending regulatory approval of a deal to be acquired by Amazon.
Week of Aug. 16, 2021: MGM has an investor call for the second quarter of 2012. The studio says little about No Time to Die. There is a single reference to the 25th James Bond film during COO Christopher Brearton’s prepared remarks. He says NTTD “sets MGM up for a tremendous second half of 2021.”
Aug. 19, 2021: Sincura Group puts out a tweet about No Time to Die’s world premiere on Sept. 28.
Aug. 19, 2021: Games Radar posts material from a Total Film interview with Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson. It’s hard to determine if this new or from a previous interview. Both say they aren’t interested in Bond spindoffs such as streaming TV shows. Wilson claims Eon has resisted such things for 60 years. Wilson shared a “developed by” credit in the 1991 James Bond Jr. cartoon show.
Aug. 19, 2021: Matthew Belloni, former editorial director of The Hollywood Reporter, writes in a newsletter that MGM and Universal are committed to the Sept. 30 U.K./Oct. 8 U.S. release date. It’s part of a larger item abut CinemaCon, the annual theater owner gathering.
No film is under a bigger microscope on this issue than No Time to Die. Numerous sources have told me there just isn’t a way to make much money in the current environment on a $250 million-plus production, but distributors MGM and Universal—with pressure from the Broccoli family, of course—are said to be committed to that Oct. 8 release date. Bond movies typically do nearly 80 percent of their business outside the U.S., particularly in the U.K. (where it’s set to open a week early) and Europe, and Universal is hoping the Delta peak will have passed there. China also hasn’t yet allowed the film, but previous Bonds got in (2015’s Spectre grossed $85 million there), and the fall release date was picked in part to avoid the country’s summer ban on Hollywood fare. It needs every penny from every market.
Belloni was also on a podcast called Hollywood Breakdown. On the podcast, he said one consideration is movies can’t be postponed indefinitely because 1) a film may be seen as stale by audiences and 2) there are marketing costs with each new release date. Belloni also said the thinking is with No Time to Die that it might generate box office of $600 million to $800 million and “they’re going to be OK if they can do that.”
Aug. 19, 2021: MI6 HQ (James Bond MI6 website) tweets out that Australia has postponed No Time to Die to Nov. 11 from Oct. 8 because of the COVID-19 Delta variant. Theater lists like this one from an Imax theater carry the Nov. 11 date.
The MI6 HQ tweet is below.
Aug. 20, 2021. Add New Zealand to that delay to Nov. 11.
Other sources say the Australia/New Zealand release dates had been Sept. 30 before the new delay. Meanwhile….
Here is the Twitter version:
Aug. 20, 2021: China lifts a ban on Western films. (F9: The Fast Saga was the last on to get a Chinese release.) MI6 HQ carries a story saying a copy of No Time to Die “was with Chinese censors before the original pandemic delay in March 2020, leaving a digital copy of the film outside of the control of the studio.” All of this leaves open a possibility NTTD will get a release in China. Studios only get 25 percent from a China release but that boosts the total worldwide gross.
Aug. 20, 2021: MGM, via United Artists Releasing, says its Addams Family 2 animated film will be released in theaters and pay-per-view on Oct. 1. This is a sign of how lobbying from Danjaq/Eon prevented the Bond movie from being available on streaming/pay per view the same time as its theatrical release. Here’s how Exhibitor Relations viewed it:
Aug. 22, 2021: Calvin Dyson posts a reaction video concerning his anticipation for No Time to Die.
Aug. 24, 2021: Some No Time to Die footage is shown at CinemaCon. Here is a report from The Wrap:
In the footage, Daniel Craig’s Bond wakes up on top of a building, disoriented, and the sound is muffled. Calling someone on the phone seems fruitless, so Bond begins to run through the city only to be on the receiving end of gunfire from Spectre agents. He ropes himself off the side of a bridge to escape, but he soon runs into the people chasing him. A fight ensues in typical Bond fashion.
Next, we see Bond with Lea Seydoux’s Madeleine Swann, and Bond asks her how Spectre knew he was in the city. He thinks she betrayed her, and there’s nothing she can say to persuade him otherwise. The two get into a beautiful vintage Aston Martin that Bond fans will recognize as the DB5 from “Goldfinger,” with all of Q’s weapons included. However, it unfortunately gets completely destroyed by gunfire in the middle of a town square by the Spectre agents.
Aug. 24, 2021: Here’s an online (and spoiler free) review of the 9-minute preview of No Time to Die.
Aug. 24, 2021: The Bond Experience does a livestream about the CinemaCon video. Here is the replay:
Aug. 26, 2021: The Los Angeles Times publishes a feature story on Lashana Lynch. In the very first paragraph, it references something about Nomi. At this point, I’m not really sure it’s a spoiler. But if you’ve managed to remain unaware of it, then don’t click. The story doesn’t pull punches. “Lynch’s casting announcement was met with outrage from misogynistic and racist trolls.”
Aug. 30, 2021: Aston Martin puts out a promotional video about No Time to Die that includes clips from previous Bond films.
Aug. 30, 2021: Another video promo, this one from Eon’s official Twitter feed.
Aug. 31, 2021: The final international and U.S. trailers for No Time to Die are released.
Aug. 31, 2021: Eon announces on social media that Being James Bond, a documentary about Daniel Craig, will debut Sept. 7 on Apple TV.
Aug. 31, 2021: Calvin Dyson puts out a reaction video about the new trailers.
Aug. 31, 2021: The Bond Experience did a livestream. Here’s the replay:
Sept. 1, 2021: Being James Bond (the fan site not the Daniel Craig documentary) posts a reaction vide about the trailers and documentary.
Sept. 3, 2021. DHL, official logistics partner for No Time to Die, is out with a new promo. In fall 2020, DHL came out with a promo the same day the movie was delayed into 2021. The new DHL promo is shown by Eon’s official James Bond Twitter feed.
Sept. 6, 2021: Eon Productions announces the official No Time to Die podcast will return on Thursday, Sept. 9.
Sept. 6, 2021: Omega puts out a No Time to Die promotional video.
Sept. 6, 2013: A German James Bond fan club passes to a Colombian James Bond fan club a trailer/promo where Lashana Lynch and Ana de Armas appear to be breaking the fourth wall and talking to the viewer in character. The audio is in German. h/t Phil Nobile Jr.
Sept. 7, 2021: Games Radar publishes a story citing an interview director Cary Fukunaga had with SFX magazine. Fukunaga says Rami Malek’s Safin is “not, as some have speculated, Dr. No.” The problem, of course, is Naomie Harris once denied she was playing Moneypenny and Christoph Waltz once denied he was playing Blofeld. So even if Fukunaga is telling the truth, it’s understandable there’s be skepticism.
Sept. 7, 2021: The Being James Bond documentary about Daniel Craig debuts on Apple TV. The 45-minute program generates fan reviews over the next two days. A sampling follows.
James Bond Television:
The Bond Experience:
Being James Bond (with a tongue-in cheek intro):
Sept. 8, 2021 (U.S. time): The official No Time to Die podcast returns with two episodes. The podcast first began in September 2020 but went into hibernation after the movie’s release was pushed back into 2021.
Sept. 9, 2021: A new U.S. spot for No Time to Die debuts, albeit in an odd manner. It’s posted first on social media, then gets yanked about five minutes later. It then is shown on NBC’s telecast of the Dallas Cowboys-Tampa Bay Buccaneers football game. It then gets re-posted on social media.
Sept. 10, 2021: Variety, citing official local media in China, says the country has cleared No Time to Die for a release in that country. No specific date is set. The move may help the total box office but studios only keep 25 percent of the take from China releases.
Sept. 10, 2021: Universal releases a NTTD promotional video. At the 21-second mark, there’s a bit more of Ana de Armas in action.
Sept. 11, 2021: Official production notes begin to circulate. I saw one tweet. The glimpse wasn’t that revealing but it’s an indication about how they’re out there. Here’s how the MI6 James Bond site warned people.
Sept. 13, 2021: No Time to Die tickets go on sale in the U.K. and other countries.
Sept. 17, 2021: No Time to Die tickets go on sale in the U.S.
Sept. 17, 2021: It is announced there will be early showings of No Time to Die as early as Oct. 6 in the U.S. at Imax theaters.
Sept. 18, 2021: The Sunday Times, promising an exclusive, publishes a story about how James Bond will never be the same after No Time to Die. Personally, it seemed like the story promised more than it actually delivered. Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson talk a bit about the cinema Bond’s future. Wilson says Daniel Craig’s performances may influence future Bond films but he also leaves himself wiggle room. There’s a lot of rehash that readers of the Bond 25 already are familiar with.
Sept. 21, 2021: One week to go before No Time to Die’ premiere. Fans have been gearing up for most of the month. This video by The Bond Experience is an example.
Sept. 22, 2021: The Hollywood Report publishes a feature story about No Time To Die director Cary Fukunaga. There’s a lot of detail about his background and work history. One thing leaped out at me. The story says original director Danny Boyle had something more “whimsical” in mind while Eon’s Broccoli and Wilson wanted something more serious for Daniel Craig’s finale as Bond. But that overlooks how Eon set aside a script it was developing in favor of a supposedly wonderful pitch by Boyle and his writer, John Hodge. Fukunaga also takes credit for suggesting bringing on Phoebe Waller-Bridge as a writer (Craig has said previously it was his idea).
Finally, Fukunaga said some changes were necessary for the #MeToo era. “Is it Thunderball or Goldfinger where, like, basically Sean Connery’s character rapes a woman?” Fukunaga told THR. “She’s like ‘No, no, no,’ and he’s like, ‘Yes, yes, yes.’ That wouldn’t fly today.”
Sept. 23, 2021: Various outlets, some entertainment, some British, run wild with Fukunaga’s rape comment. There were so many, I am not going to attempt to link all of them. Examples include the HuffPost (formerly Huffington Post), Fox News’ website, NZ Herald, The Guardian, and IndieWire.
Sept. 23, 2021: Eon’s official Bond feed on Twitter runs a video from the Jamaica Tourist Board.
Sept. 23, 2021: The BBC’s website runs a feature about women writers on Bond, Phoebe Waller-Bridge for NTTD and Johanna Harwood, Dr. No and From Russia With Love.
Sept. 23, 2021: Baz Bamigboye of the Daily Mail writes up a big feature story on Lashana Lynch.
Sept. 24, 2021: The release date for No Time to Die in Malaysia is delayed to Nov. 25. The MI6 James Bond website tweeted out the news.
Sept. 24, 2021: Two tracks of the No Time to Die soundtrack are released. A tweet from Eon’s official James Bond feed on Twitter has information. The tweet also includes a sample of the music with a video.
Expanded entry: The YouTube video below has one of the tracks, titled “Matera.”
Sept. 24, 2021: The Guardian publishes a story saying U.K. cinemas are hiring extra employees to handle the rush of movie goers for No Time to Die. This should make Eon happy because, reportedly the makers of Bond films mostly care about U.K. box office.
Sept. 24, 2021: Digital spy posts video interviews with members of the No Time to Die cast.
Sept. 25, 2021 (U.K. time): Another day, another Cary Fukunaga interview. This one is with Radio Times. Fukunaga talks a fair amount about the story process of meetings with Barbara Broccoli, Michael G. Wilson and different writers at different times.
“There was this table in Michael’s office in EON in Piccadilly – this round table that looks like a Napoleonic era campaign table – and I spent hours sitting around that table with Michael and Barbara and Daniel and sometimes the different writers that were working on the project, just discussing the plot, the story points, the characters.”
“I really actually enjoyed those story sessions. The different directions the story could’ve taken… there’s an infinite number of possibilities there.”
Sept. 25, 2021: A new James Bond movie is about to come out. Could The Guardian use the occasion to publish another article about why it’s time to end James Bond? Of course.
(T)he old misogynist with his infantile projections is finally getting the symbolic castration he has long deserved. In the much-delayed Bond movie No Time to Die, the new 007 (Nomi, played by the British actor Lashana Lynch) tells the old one: “The world has moved on, Commander Bond.” While Daniel Craig’s Bond has been furloughed, Nomi has replaced him at MI6, taking his licence to kill in the process.
Sept. 26, 2021: Eon, via its social media channels, says No Time to Die premiere activities will be livestreamed via Eon’s Facebook page:
Sept. 26, 2021: Yahoo publishes yet another interview with Fukunaga. “Rape” nor “rapist” is mentioned (I did a search for the words). That likely ensures the tabloids will ignore the story. The No Time to Die director says the next Bond actor should be different than Craig. Really? I wonder how Barbara Broccoli will feel about that.
Sept. 27, 2021: Eon’s Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson are interviewed on BBC Radio 4’s Today program. That link is only good for 29 days but Variety has a story with quotes from the interview as well. Broccoli says Eon won’t do anything about a Daniel Craig replacement until 2022. “Oh God no. We’re not thinking about it at all. We want Daniel to have his time of celebration. Next year we’ll start thinking about the future.” Also, have a hiatus, Broccoli brings back the “d” word when it comes to Craig. “And I’m sort of in denial, I would love for Daniel to continue forever.”
And the saga finally concludes in PART 007: THE MOVIE COMES OUT .