Craig and Broccoli say no schedule set for Bond 24

Skyfall’s producer and star suggest a Sony executive was “a little overexcited.”

Daniel Craig and Barbara Broccoli, IN AN INTERVIEW WITH COLLIDER.COM LAST WEEK, said there isn’t a firm schedule for Bond 24.

Here’s an excerpt:

(Question:) Last week Rory (Bruer), the president of distribution of Sony, announced Bond 24 for I guess late 2014…

Broccoli: He was getting a little overexcited (laughs). We’re just actually focusing on this movie. One hopes that in the future we’ll be announcing other films, but no one’s officially announced it.

Craig: No one’s announced anything. He got a little ahead of himself (laughs). It’s very nice that he has the confidence to be able to do that, but we haven’t finished this movie (Skyfall) yet.

Two things we’ve noted before: Sony wants Bond 24 to come out in 2014 and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer has said it wants the Bond series to resume an every-other-year schedule. But Eon Productions owns half the franchise, and nobody other than Eon can produce a Bond movie as long as that’s the case.

On the other hand, variations of the line “nothing’s been announced” are meaningless. Announcements come at the end of the process. Craig and Broccoli said it hadn’t been officially announced that Ben Whishaw would be playing Q, or a similar character, in Skyfall. Then, around the same time, director Sam Mendes TOLD THE U.K. SUN NEWSPAPER that’s exactly what happened and that it was all his idea.

Our guess, and it’s only a guess: Don’t expect Skyfall Bond 24 until 2015. To have Bond 24 ready in two years after Skyfall, at least some work on a story should be underway by this fall. Maybe it has, or will, start by that time and nothing has been “officially announced.” On the other hand, Eon isn’t known for multitasking. Anyway, we shall see what we shall see.

SHIELD’s helicarrier as seen in the comics

Jack Kirby’s original depiction of the SHIELD helicarrier

The big movie is the U.S. this weekend is Marvel’s The Avengers. One of the film’s settings is a massive flying complex belonging to the mysterious organization SHIELD that has brought together a group of superheroes. That flying headquarters, or helicarrier, made its debut in Strange Tales No. 135, which also introduced Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby.

In that initial story, Nick Fury is being recruited to lead SHIELD. He doesn’t know where he has been taken until the 11th page of the 12-page tale where Fury foils a plot by a secret organization called Hydra to destroy SHIELD’s command center. (See image at right.)

Later, in Strange Tales No. 154, artist Jim Steranko (who also plotted the SHIELD story in that issue), provided a “blueprint” with a cutaway view of the helicarrier. “Being made of a new silica and steel alloy, it is a simple feat for the colossal craft to hover five miles above the Eastern Seaboard…and to go much higher, if necessary!” scripter Roy Thomas informed readers.

Jim Steranko’s “blueprint” for the helicarrier

Also, in that issue, Fury is outfitted with a new flameproof and fireproof suit from a SHIELD staffer named, eh, Boothroyd. The suit is pretty much trashed by the end of the issue after Fury encounters a Hydra robot called the Dreadnaught.

Lee, in his 1975 book Sons of Origins of Marvel Comics, said he was a fan of James Bond films and the television show The Man From U.N.C.L.E. “We were going to out-Bond Bond and out-UNCLE UNCLE — if you’ve got to set goals for yourself, might as well make ’em big ones!”

UPDATE: Marvel’s The Avengers set a U.S. record for a movie’s opening weekend with $200.3 million in ticket sales. That’s a preliminary figure based on actual ticket sales on Friday and Saturday and estimated results for Sunday. The final figure will be released on May 7.