The key elements of marketing the 25th James Bond film come into focus.
By Bill Koenig/
adapted from posts in The Spy Command
With than less than five months before its release, the marketing plan for No Time to Die, the 25th James Bond film, is emerging.
Every film has its talking points. The Bond series is no different. There were long periods of quiet during principal photography. Now, however, the public is getting exposed to the points of emphasis in marketing.
DANIEL CRAIG IS THE BEST BOND/MY FAVORITE BOND
It’s pretty clear that one recurring theme of No Time to Die’s publicity campaign is that Daniel Craig is either the favorite James Bond of principals associated with the movie or is simply the best Bond, period.
Barbara Broccoli (Hollywood Reporter podcast, December 2017): Craig “brought humanity to the character…making Bond relevant to today….My heart was breaking” until Craig said he’d return for Bond 25/No Time to Die.
The interviewer, Scott Feinberg, asked if Craig was the best of the six actors employed by Eon Productions. “They’ve (Bond actors) all been incredible. But he (Craig) is particularly incredible.”
Host of April 2019 “reveal” event from Jamaica: Referring to Craig, she introduces a montage of Bond films scenes. She says the scenes show how Craig made Bond “his own.”
No Time to Die director Cary Fukunaga, during the “reveal” event: “Daniel is my favorite James Bond.”
Rami Malek on The Late Show (CBS), Oct. 2, 2019: Craig “is my favorite Bond if I can say that.”
Scott Z. Burns, screenwriter interview with The Express, Nov. 10, 2019: “I think Daniel has been an incredible custodian of that character and I think for the people who like the direction he has taken it, they are going to really love what happens next.”
PHOEBE WALLER-BRIDGE IS A MAJOR ASSET
Another No Time to Die screenwriter, has perhaps received the most attention of No Time to Die’s crew. Certainly she’s gotten more attention more than any other No Time to Die scribe and more than director Cary Fukunaga.
That’s understandable. Waller-Bridge is a television star as well as a writer. She won three Emmys for her Fleabag streaming TV series. She hosted Saturday Night Live. She’s all over the place because of her various projects.
As a result, Waller-Bridge has emerged as part of the movie’s marketing campaign. Cast members absolutely are playing up Waller-Bridge’s involvement.
Daniel Craig in a Sunday Times interview (Nov. 3, 2019) said it was his idea to bring Waller-Bridge aboard.
“But she’s just brilliant. I had my eye on her ever since the first Fleabag [TV series], and then I saw Killing Eve and what she did with that and just wanted her voice. It is so unique — we are very privileged to have her on board.”
The actor also said Waller-Bridge’s gender has received too much attention.
“Look, we’re having a conversation about Phoebe’s gender here, which is f****** ridiculous. She’s a great writer. Why shouldn’t we get Phoebe onto Bond? That’s the answer to that. I know where you’re going, but I don’t actually want to have that conversation. I know what you’re trying to do, but it’s wrong. It’s absolutely wrong. She’s a f****** great writer. One of the best English writers around. I said, ‘Can we get her on the film?’ That’s where I came from.”
Cast members Lashana Lynch and Ana de Armas, profiled in a story by The Hollywood Reporter, Nov. 6, 2019, complimented Waller-Bridge.
De Armas: ” I saw Phoebe, and I just blushed — I got red like a tomato. I was like, ‘Oh my God, can I hug you? I want to be your friend.’ ”
Lynch: “I very literally squealed when I first heard her name. I thought, ‘Oh my gosh, British girl just like me. She’s going to know how to actually take care of women onscreen.’ ”
In September, Baz Bamigboye of the Daily Mail wrote a story that Waller-Bridge is being wooed to help write Bond 26, whenever that projects gets doing.
The story quoted “an executive close to the production” as saying Waller-Bridge’s contribution to the script was great — far greater greater than we’d anticipated. She’s the savior of Bond, really.”
If that quote was from someone who really had major responsibility, he or she had to know such comments would be played.
NO TIME TO DIE ADJUSTS TO #METOO
That same Hollywood Reporter story also discussed the effects of the #MeToo movement on No Time to Die.
Here’s a passage:
When it’s released…the $250 million No Time to Die will be the first entry in the series to land in a #MeToo and Time’s Up world. And while the $7 billion franchise may forever be best known for its womanizing namesake agent, director Fukunaga (True Detective, Beasts of No Nation) and producer Barbara Broccoli have worked hard with both Lynch and de Armas to create a new type of female Bond character who is much more fully realized than the “Bond girls” of films past.
Now, a regular marketing point of Bond movies the last few decades is that new Bond women are an improvement on earlier Bond women. Still, #MeToo has an impact on entertainment, Silicon Valley and politics.
“The #MeToo movement came at the right time — I mean long overdue,” Eon Productions boss Barbara Broccoli said in an interview at the April “reveal” event in Jamaica. “It’s had a huge impact on the world…I think everything we do has to reflect that.”
You can view her comments below, starting around the 2:15 mark.