Eon, studios launch No Time to Die podcast

A No Time to Die poster

Eon Productions and its studio partners are starting a No Time to Die podcast on Sept. 30 to promote the 25th James Bond film.

The production company announced the podcast in a post on Twitter. That included a short video promising “unrivalled behind-the-scenes access.”

The new podcast has an Apple podcast page that went live last week. According to that page, the No Time to Die podcast will be a six-part affair.

Here’s the description:

No Time To Die: The Official James Bond Podcast is a new and exclusive podcast to accompany the worldwide release of the 25th Bond film, No Time To Die. Hosted by James King, the six-part series features exclusive interviews with Daniel Craig, Rami Malek, Léa Seydoux, Lashana Lynch, Jeffrey Wright, Naomie Harris, director Cary Joji Fukunaga, producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli and a host of key behind the scenes crew from casting director to special effects supervisor.

Each of the six episodes focusses on a different aspect of the franchise. Learn everything about Bond from guns, gadgets, locations, stunts, costumes and cars.

No Time to Die: The Official James Bond Podcast is produced by Somethin’ Else in association with Metro Goldwyn Mayer Studios, Universal Pictures International, United Artists Releasing and Eon Productions.

Pinewood looks to add visitor attraction

Pinewood Group PLC logo

Pinewood Group PLC, the parent organization of Pinewood Studios, said today it’s looking to add a visitor attraction to the studio near London.

The company said the Pinewood Studio Experience would be 350,000 square feet. Pinewood also said there will be “new film production facilities with ‘live’ links to the Experience.”

“We have been looking at a visitor experience for some time and feel that now is the right moment to bring it forward,” Paul Golding, chairman of Pinewood Group, said in a statement. “The project will strengthen UK film and bring much needed jobs and spending.”

All of this is part of an expansion project dubbed Screen Hub UK. That project would be built on a 77-acre site south of the studio. The company is preparing an application for the project.

Pinewood Studios has been home base to most of the 25 James Bond films produced by Eon Productions.

Eon puts out a NTTD promo featuring Safin

Rami Malek in a No Time to Die trailer

Eon Productions today put out a No Time to Die promo featuring the character of Safin, the film’s villain.

“What I really wanted from Safin was to make him unsettling…thinking of himself as heroic,” actor Rami Malek says in the promo.

Director Cary Fukunaga also chimes in about how Safin is “a very frightening character.”

The promo also still lists November as No Time to Die’s release date.

The tweet with the promo is embedded below. The promo also was on Eon’s official 007 website. You can check out the promo for yourself.

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10-second teaser released for new NTTD trailer

No Time to Die poster released Sept. 1.

A 10-second teaser was released today ahead of a Sept. 3 release of a new No Time to Die trailer.

The teaser includes previously unreleased footage of a ship firing missiles, a jet firing missiles, an evening dress-clad Ana de Armas kicking a thug and a Land Rover in the midst of a chase.

The teaser was included in a post by Eon Productions’s official Twitter feed.

On Monday, a new No Time to Die poster was released along with the disclosure of the impending trailer release.

In the Monday announcement, Eon said No Time to Die was still on track for a November release.

The 25th James Bond film had been set for an April release following a March 31 world premiere. But the release got postponed because of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

Many Bond fans have been bolstered by the international release of Tenet, the newest Christopher Nolan movies that combines spy fiction with science fiction.

Here’s the Eon tweet with the teaser:

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UPDATE (1:35 p.m.): The teaser is now on YouTube.

Eon unveils new NTTD poster, says trailer coming

No Time to Die poster released Sept. 1.

Eon Productions’s official James Bond feed on Twitter released a new No Time to Die poster and said a new trailer for the film will be out on Thursday.

The announcement came a day after Bond-related emoji had been activated on Twitter for hashtags such as #JamesBond and #NoTimeToDie. Such emojis are paid for by studios as part of a movie’s marketing.

The new poster only features star Daniel Craig.

The tweet from Eon repeats the movie is coming out in November.

No Time to Die had been set to be released in April. But the 25th James Bond film was postponed until November because of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

No Time to Die is being released by United Artists Releasing (co-owned by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Bond’s home studio) in the U.S. and by Universal internationally

Barbara Broccoli now No. 2 in 007 film tenure

Barbara Broccoli, boss of Eon Productions

The milestone took place a few years ago, but it should be noted that Barbara Broccoli is now No. 2 in 007 film tenure at 38 years.

Broccoli, 60, has worked in the franchise full-time since 1982. She graduated from college that year and soon was working on Octopussy, which began filming that summer. She received an on-screen credit of executive assistant.

Earlier, she worked part-time as a teenager, writing captions for publicity stills on The Spy Who Loved Me.

At 38 years, she trails only her half-brother, Michael G. Wilson, 78, who joined Eon Productions in 1972. Wilson and Broccoli have shared the producer title on Bond films since 1995’s GoldenEye.

Albert R. Broccoli, co-founder of Eon and its parent company Danjaq, had a tenure of 35 years, from 1961 until his death in 1996.

UPDATE (July 11): To be clear, this post only concerns total tenure time on a full-time basis. Albert R. Broccoli was either co-decision maker (when Harry Saltzman was his partner) or primary decision-maker (after Saltzman departed) for almost all of his 35 years. He only yielded toward the end of that time because of health issues.

Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli have spent more years involved in the franchise. But it took them some years to achieve the same decision-maker status.

B25 reports spending for No Time to Die

No Time to Die poster

B25 Ltd. in a U.K, regulatory filing said the production of No Time to Die was almost 199.5 million British pounds.

B25 was formed as part of the making of the 25th James Bond film. Eon Productions is the parent company of B25.

In the filing, B25 lists 199.47 million pounds for a “work in progress” which “comprises costs incurred on film production for which the film has not yet been completed or delivered.”

At the current exchange rate of about $1.21 to the pound, that would be about $241.4 million.

Principal photography of No Time to Die began in April 2019 and was completed in the fall. Post-production worked extended into early 2020.

The filing also says the production received a tax credit of 46.8 million pounds.

1980s: When 007 fandom grew up

Original cover to The James Bond Films by Steven Jay Rubin

Almost 20 years after Sean Connery’s debut as James Bond in Dr. No, 007 fandom began to grow up.

One of the breakthroughs was The James Bond Films by Steven Jay Rubin, first published in 1981. It was one of the first times that the Bond phenomenon got a more dispassionate examination.

Previously, there had been books that examined the films. John Brosnan’s James Bond in the Cinema amounted to a detailed review of the first seven Bond films (a later edition added to that). Kingsley Amis (who would soon write a 007 continuation novel) examined the Ian Fleming novels in The James Bond Dossier.

The Rubin book, though, included details of the behind-the-scenes conflict. In my own case, it was the first time I read how producers Abert R. Broccoli and Harry Saltzman ended up alternating as the lead force behind each film. It also spelled out details of the conflict between the duo.

“Live And Let Die was Harry Saltzman’s swan song as a full time James Bond film producer,” Rubin wrote at the start of his chapter about The Man With the Golden Gun. “Since that first meeting in Broccoli’s office in the early 1960’s, their partnership had been a stormy one.”

Not the stuff of what the publicity department had turned out for years.

Rubin didn’t get cooperation from Eon Productions, which began making the Bond movies in 1962. With a lack of film stills, Rubin had to turn to other sources to illustrate his book, including photos from news services.

In a way, at least for me, I had a greater appreciation of what the series had accomplished. The reader got an idea of alternate ideas and concepts that had been considered for different films.

Another key 1980s publication was Raymond Benson’s James Bond Bedside Companion, first published in 1984. It examined both the Fleming novels and the films.

Benson first became a fan in the mid-1960s when Goldfinger came out and Bond had become a phenomenon.

He was not (and still isn’t) a fan of the Roger Moore films that came later for the most part. In a video posted Feb. 20 by The Bond Experience, Benson said: “The movies became something else. They became comedies,” he said. “Once got The Man With the Golden Gun, I was just kind of going, ‘This is not the Bond I know.’…They weren’t my cup of tea.”

Nevertheless, Benson’s interest revived in the early 1980s when both the John Gardner 007 novels began and For Your Eyes Only reached theaters. In the interview, Benson said that’s when he got the idea of doing The James Bond Bedside Companion. “I was really back interested again.”

The book analyzed both the Fleming originals and the films up to that time (a later edition updated the films). In the 1990s, Benson was hired to succeed Gardner as the Bond continuation author. He did both original novels and movie novelizations until 2002.

You can see the Benson interview below.

Hindsight: Boyle-directed Bond 25

Danny Boyle

As the saying goes, hindsight is 20-20.

So, if Danny Boyle and Eon Productions hadn’t parted ways in August 2018, Bond 25 presumably would have made its original November 2019 release date.

Of course, it didn’t play out that way. Cary Fukunaga was hired as Boyle’s replacement.

Once that occurred, Bond 25 (later No Time to Die) was scheduled to come out Feb. 14, 2020. But that didn’t work out and the release was pushed back to April 2020 — this month.

That’s the comfort of hindsight. Maybe Bond 25 would have been handicapped by an Odd Couple relationship between Boyle and Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson of Eon Productions.

There’s no way to know for now. All fans know is Boyle exited because of “creative differences” between himself and Eon Productions.

The best evidence of a better alternative is the Fukunaga-directed No Time to Die, currently being stored where ever it may be. Fukunaga says the movie is locked down and won’t be tweaked until its current release date of November.

Movies evolve. Directors and writers come and go. For Bond fans spending their time at home because of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), they can only wonder what could have been — and anticipate what is to come.

MGM’s NTTD shift may cost $30M-$50M, THR says

New No Time to Die poster

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer may take a hit of $30 million to $50 million by moving No Time to Die’s release date, The Hollywood Reporter said. But not moving the date could have cost more, the outlet said, citing people it didn’t identify.

MGM, James Bond’s home studio, Eon Productions and Universal (the international distributor) said this week the 25th James Bond film is being moved to November from April.

THR said MGM “fully financed” No Time to Time, which has an estimated production budget of $250 million.

The entertainment news outlet said had MGM stuck with the April release, that would have been more costly because of markets where theaters were shut down because of the coronavirus.

Theaters in China, Japan and Italy have been closed. “That could have resulted in a minimum of 30 percent shaved off the final box-office tallies — a possible $300 million out of a likely $1 billion haul at the worldwide box office,” THR said.

Earlier this week, the MI6 James Bond website and The James Bond Dossier urged MGM, Universal and Eon Productions to delay the release because of health hazards stemming from the coronavirus. The open letter was published March 2 and the decision to delay was announced March 4.

The open letter, besides citing the health risks, said No Time to Die faced lower box office prospects because of efforts to combat coronavirus.

“Of the countries with large public gatherings banned or restricted, their combined ‘SPECTRE’ box-office was $313m, or 38% of the global haul,” the open letter said. SPECTRE, released in 2015, was the most recent Bond film.