Eilish, Finneas provide more details about NTTD song

Billie Eilish

Billie Eilish and Finneas O’Connell did interviews on morning shows in the U.K. and the U.S. and provided a few additional details about the No Time to Die title song they co-wrote with Eilish performing.

BBC BreakfastO’Connell said “we did go to re-listen to everything,” referring to past Bond songs to make sure they weren’t copying “other great songs.”

Eilish said she and her brother had a meeting Eon chief Barbara Broccoli in Ireland in early September.

“She basically gave us a little hint of what the first scene, what’s happening.” Broccoli later sent the first part of the script. “We had what the audience will have watched before they hear the song…It was really, really helpful. It really wrote the song for us.”

The siblings also said they had writer’s block initially. It was after that they wrote the song in three days.

Each also said star Daniel Craig had a big say in the song. “If Daniel doesn’t like it, you don’t get the job,” O’Connell said.

Toward the end, Eilish said she was scared about performing at the BRITS later in the day because “I have to hit a note I’ve never hit before.”

Good Morning America: O’Connell said the duo had “essentially total creative freedom in the writing process.”

Finneas O’Connell discusses origins of NTTD song

Finneas O’Connell, older brother and collaborator of Billie Eilish

Finneas O’Connell, co-writer of the No Time to Die title song with his sister Billie Eilish, described the creative process in an interview with GQ.

“We wrote No Time to Die on a tour bus. Specifically, in the bunks of our tour bus,” told the magazine.

“We were given the first 20 pages of the script. I guess that’s up to the point when the song comes in during the movie, right? That’s how all the Bond films open up.

“So we were able to read the first 20 pages, which was obviously incredible. It gave us such a good steer and such insight into where the song would fall, and the tone. It makes it easier than having to write the whole song based on the entire movie; or in fact none of the movie.”

That sounds like the duo read the script’s pre-titles sequence. The general rule of thumb is that one page of script equals about one minute of screen time.

That suggests the pre-titles sequence may run about 20 minutes, although no one will know for sure until editing of the movie is complete.

O’Connell described what happened next.

“So Billie and I wrote the song, recorded the demo, sent it to them and then we finished it in London with Hans Zimmer doing the orchestral arrangements and also Johnny Marr from The Smiths,” he said. “I mean, James Bond? Hans Zimmer? Johnny Marr? Mind blowing.”

The interview covers other subjects. You can read the interview by CLICKING HERE.

Coronavirus outbreak in China may affect NTTD

No Time to Die teaser poster

The coronavirus epidemic, which has caused more than 1,600 deaths in China, may have an effect on No Time to Die, The Sunday Times said.

About 70,000 theater screens in China have been closed because of the epidemic, The Sunday Times said. Authorities from multiple countries are fighting to contain the epidemic.

“No Time to Die, due for UK release on April 3, will be Daniel Craig’s last as 007 and was expected to be the highest-grossing Bond movie to date,” The Sunday Times said. “But with revenue from the Chinese market in doubt this is now seen as unlikely.”

Skyfall, released in 2012, had a global box office of $1.1 billion and is the top-grossing Bond film unadjusted for inflation.

China is the world’s second-largest movie market. Studios look to China for a major part of their global revenue from major films. The Screen Rant website listed 15 examples where movies made changes to ensure a China release.

UPDATE (10:10 p.m., New York time): China had a box office of $59.3 million for Skyfall, according to Box Office Mojo. China accounted for $83.5 million for 2015’s SPECTRE, which had a global box office of $880.7 million.

Without China, Skyfall was still a billion-dollar movie. Without China, SPECTRE would have fallen short of $800 million. China provided a decent amount of the box office for both films but SPECTRE was more reliant on China than Skyfall was.

UPDATE II (3:55 p.m., Feb. 16): Deadline: Hollywood published a story. No Time to Die’s China premiere and publicity tour have been scrapped. The story notes that Chinese theaters are closed indefinitely while the country tries to contain the disease. On Feb. 15, CNBC had a story that U.S. officials don’t trust China to provide accurate information about the epidemic.

Ana de Armas speaks in (another) new NTTD spot

No Time to Die is out with yet another new spot, this time the viewer finally gets to hear Ana de Armas’ speak.

In the 30-second commercial, de Armas’ Paloma character chides Daniel Craig’s James Bond for tardiness. “You’re late,” she says when the characters meet.

This marks the second time a woman character has put Craig/Bond in his place. In the first trailer, Lashana Lynch’s Nomi threatened to shoot him in the knee (“the one that works”) if Bond didn’t stay out of her way.

Also, M (Ralph Fiennes) is heard from a bit more. In a previous spot, he said, “Come on, Bond.” Now it’s, “Come on, Bond, where the hell are you?”

The spot is below if you want to view it for yourself.

NTTD song gets rave reviews from major outlets

No Time to Die teaser poster

The release of No Time to Die’s title song generated debate among Bond fans. But the Billie Eilish number, which she performed and co-wrote, generated rave reviews from some established outlets.

What follows is a sampling.

BRENNA EHRLICH, ROLLING STONE: “Is this a soundtrack for exploding cars and sharks with lasers on their heads? Hell no. It’s a soundtrack befitting a Bond for our times, played by a worn-out Daniel Craig facing down his fifth and final outing as 007. Bond always gets the girl, but it never ends well. As such, Eilish’s acceptance of a lonely life is really kind of fitting.”

CHRIS WILLMAN, VARIETY: “‘No Time to Die’ is one of the better Bond songs of the last 25 or 30 years, coming in ahead of a lot of entries that seemed promising and didn’t really work: besides Garbage’s and (Sheryl) Crow’s, there were underwhelming efforts from Chris Cornell and the team of Jack White and Alicia Keys, worthy artists that tried to contemporize the idea of what a Bond theme should be, at their mortal peril. (The less remembered about Madonna turning Bond techno, the better.)”

MARK SAVAGE, BBC: Billie Eilish “is known for her intimate, designed-for-headphone vocal style, but she rises to the challenge of the song’s soaring climax, with her early vulnerability transforming into strength and resolve. It’s easily the most audacious and atmospheric take on the Bond theme in recent memory.”

ALEXIS PETRIDRIS, THE GUARDIAN: “Yet Eilish has stamped her own identity on the song. The tendency for vocalists tackling a Bond theme is to belt it out, as if in homage to the most famous Bond singer of the lot: Shirley Bassey is known for many things, but subtle understatement isn’t among them. Eilish, however, opts for her standard close-mic approach in which surliness does battle with vulnerability.”

Your mileage may vary. Among fans, the ones who liked the song really, really liked it while among fans who didn’t care it, they really, really didn’t like it. 

No Time to Die title song debuts

The title song for No Time to Die debuted Thursday night. The song co-written and performed by Billie Eilish included a few Bond music touches.

Around the 1:00 mark, there was a “WAAAAAA” sound that John Barry dropped into his James Bond film scores now and then. Around the 2:02 mark, there was an ominous-sounding instrumental, similar to Barry scores when something, well, ominous was about the happen.

Finally, at the end, there was a brief twang of an electric guitar, again similar to early Barry scores in the Bond series. Barry retired the electric guitar after Sean Connery departed the Eon-produced series. Other composers, such as Marvin Hamlisch, Michael Kamen, and David Arnold brought it back.

We’ll see how the reaction goes. Regardless, it was far from the parody version seen on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert on CBS. That was essentially “Bad Guy” with tweaked lyrics.

You can view the YouTube version of the No Time to Die song below.

What’s more, Eon Production posted a video featuring the song. It had some shots (not many) that hadn’t been in previous trailers and TV spots.

UPDATE (8:02 p.m., New York time): If you CLICK HERE you can read the lyrics to No Time to Die. h/t Jack Lugo.

UPDATE II (3:40 a.m., Feb. 14): Hans Zimmer, who is scoring the movie, says on Twitter, that the No Time to Die song includes an orchestral arrangement by himself and Matt Dunkley. 

No Time to Die song to debut Thursday

Billie Eilish

No Time to Die’s title song will debut on Thursday, Feb. 13, co-writer and performer Billie Eilish announced on Twitter.

The song will be released at 4 p.m. Los Angeles time, or 7 p.m. New York time, according to the post on Twitter.

The song is actually titled “No Time to Die,” Eilish said.

Eilish wrote the song with her brother, Finneas O’Connell. The announcement that she was performing the Bond song was made in mid-January.

Eilish appeared on the Feb. 9 Oscars telecast. She performed the song “Yesterday” as part of the program’s In Memoriam segment.

Here’s the Twitter post that went out. There’s a snippet of the song.

https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js