Variety says NTTD’s budget was $301 million

Not that the blog is jumping to conclusions or anything…

No Time to Die’s “net” budget — even taking into account the value of product placement deals and tax breaks — was $301 million, Variety said.

The figure, if accurate, would make the 25th James Bond film the most expensive in the series produced by Eon Productions.

The raw spending on 2015’s SPECTRE exceeded $300 million, according to documents that became public in 2014 after Sony Corp. documents were hacked. But that was before product placement and tax breaks were factored in. The “net” figure for SPECTRE was $245 million.

For months, entertainment outlets have reported No Time to Die’s final budget at $250 million, only slightly more than SPECTRE.

The $301 million figure provides more evidence that No Time to Die may be a financial disaster for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Bond’s home studio.

No Time to Die has been delayed repeatedly. The movie was set to be released in April but was delayed to November because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Earlier this month, the Bond film was delayed again to April 2021.

The Hollywood Reporter carried an Oct. 27 story with behind-the-scenes details of how MGM had talks with Apple Inc. about a one-year lease for No Time to Die to show on Apple’s streaming service. But Apple only offered $350 million to $400 million. MGM wanted $650 million to $750 million or more, THR said.

The THR report said the No Time to Die delay is costing MGM $1 million a month in interest costs. The Variety story carries the same figure.

In addition, according to Variety, star Daniel Craig “and producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson, who control the rights to the series, have generous backend and profit participation deals, limiting the amount of money MGM is able to make on the movie.”

As stated before, No Time to Die was a pre-pandemic movie financed and filmed before COVID-19. But the Bond movie is to come out in the middle of a pandemic which has reduced theater availability.

Nothing exceeds like excess. No Time to Die might be the best James Bond movie ever and still be a financial disaster for MGM.

Update: Things not looking good for Bond’s ride

Things continue to look bleak for Aston Martin, the preferred ride for the cinematic James Bond.

Earlier this week, Daimler AG’s Mercedes Benz took a 20 percent stake in Aston Martin, as noted by multple outlets including the BBC. Mercedes is boosting its stake from 5 percent.

The maker of British luxury sports cars earlier this year saw Lawrence Stoll, owner of a Formula One team, take a majority stake.

Under the deal with Mercedes, Aston will get access to Mercedes electric-car technology.

Meanwhile, Aston also has boosted the yield on a $1.1 billion junk-bond (no pun intended) sale to about 10.5 percent, according to Reuters.

Translation: Aston is viewed as a risky bet, meaning it has to pay higher interest on its borrowings even while interest rates generally are low.

Aston was owned by Ford Motor Co. from 1987 to 2007. The company has had its share of ups and downs (mostly downs) ever since.

Aston has been part of the Bond film series since 1964’s Goldfinger. There will be multiple Aston models in No Time to Die (whenever it comes out).