Eon Productions posts 2021 financial results in U.K. filing

Eon Productions logo

Eon Productions, in a U.K, regulatory filing for the year ended Dec. 31, 2021, said it had a loss before taxes of 48.9 million British pounds ($59.1 million) before taxes.

After taxes, Eon reported a profit of 2.44 million British pounds (almost $2.97 million) after taxes.

To view for yourself and CLICK HERE and click on the entry for Dec. 29, 2022.

2021 was the year Eon’s most recent James Bond film, No Time to Die, was released. The bulk of Bond film finances come from its studio partner, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, now part of Amazon.

“The directors (of Eon) consider the results of the group to be in line with expectations,” the filing says. “The results for the year were considered more than satisfactory by the directors who anticipate an increase in the net profitability of the group during periods when a film is released.

“Looking forward, the directors the directors anticipate to display continued growth and profitability whilst concentrating on the next development of its next film toward its production.”

The filing is signed by “M Wilson CBE, Director.” Presumably, that means Michael G. Wilson of Eon Productions.

The financial results were first reported in a Variety story.

State of the Bond franchise: Year-end 2022

The year of the 60th anniversary of the James Bond movie franchise is drawing to an end. What happens next?

The thing is, nobody outside of Eon Productions (and their film partners Amazon and MGM) really knows.

Nature abhors a vacuum. So it is with the future of the cinematic James Bond.

One U.K. tabloid, Rupert Murdoch’s The Sun, claims that Aaron Taylor-Johnson, has the inside track to be the next cinematic Bond. But nobody else has confirmed that. For now, The Sun is alone, out on that limb.

One Bond fan YouTube Channel has suggested Christopher Nolan has an inside track to be Bond 26’s director. But we’ve heard that song before.

One Spanish-language Bond fan site once claimed in 2017 that Nolan would direct Bond 25/No Time to Die. This week, that same site did a gag post saying it had confirmed Taylor-Johnson would be the new film Bond. Dec. 28 is the Spanish equivalent of April Fools. You might think that’s funny but it’s not a way to enhance your credibility.

All of this reflects a thirst, a hunger, for ANYTHING about ACTUAL, REAL information about the future of the cinematic 007.

Barbara Broccoli, the boss of Eon Productions, said repeatedly it would be at least two years before Bond 26 would start filming. Supposedly, Eon is doing a deep dive into Bond’s movie future.

Broccoli’s father, Albert R. Broccoli, once (between May 1985 and July 1987) changed creative direction and cast not one, but two Bond actors (Pierce Brosnan first and when that didn’t work out, Timothy Dalton).

Is this a serious deliberation? Of course. But it’s not rocket science. James Bond is James Bond. The character has been adapted to the times on numerous occasions.

Maybe, just maybe, we’ll know more in 2023.

Until then, happy New Year.

Daniel Craig: The Long Goodbye Part Infinity

Daniel Craig in Quantum of Solace

At this rate, Daniel Craig’s goodbye from the role of James Bond will be as long as the running time of the five movies (which included the three longest Bond films) where he played 007.

Variety this week came out with yet another story where the 54-year-old actor says he wanted to stop playing James Bond.

Daniel Craig says he has no regrets about leaving James Bond behind and has revealed that he discussed killing the character with franchise producer Barbara Broccoli.

“No, none at all,” Craig said when asked by Martha Kearney on BBC Radio 4’s “Best of Today” podcast. “I had an incredibly fortunate 17 years of my life making this. I literally want to spend the next 20 years of my life trying to unhook it all and try and put it into a place because it was incredible. I left it where I wanted it to be. And that I was given the chance to do that with the last movie.”

Which is a variation of comments Craig has said in multiple interviews since the long-delayed No Time to Die finally came out in the fall of 2021.

We get it. According to Craig, he wanted to kill off his version of Bond very early into his tenure. Fine. If true, he got his way.

Why is this still a thing?

Partially, it’s because there isn’t much real Bond film news. So, naturally, entertainment reporters keep picking over the scabs of the recent past.

Eon Productions has been doing a victory lap since No Time to Die came out.

Victory lap? More like a victory marathon. But you get the idea.

When last we heard from Eon boss Barbara Broccoli, the production company was still figuring out where to go next. Whatever.

Craig, after cashing in hefty paychecks for Bond, is cashing in even more hefty paychecks from Netflix for playing his Knives Out character. Good for you, Daniel. Being an actor can be a hard way to make a living. At this stage, Craig has made enough money for multiple generations of his family.

In American football, players who score a touchdown spike the ball in the end zone. Figuratively, Craig and Barbara Broccoli are running from end zone to end zone to spike the ball.

It would be nice if Variety, or other major entertainment news outlets, could let us know about the future of Bond films. But that doesn’t seem to be happening.

About that Daniel Craig LAT interview

Daniel Craig’s 007

Daniel Craig, after a five-film run as James Bond, reflected on his 007 run (Casino Royale through No Time to Die) in an interview with the Los Angeles Times.

Whatever your feelings about those five movies, the LAT interview showed the 54-year-old actor has mixed feelings. An excerpt:

“It’s my fault because I kind of didn’t shut up about the fact that I had all these injuries. I’m pissed off at myself that I ever even spoke about them,” Craig said. “I put way more work into the creative side of those movies than I did into the physical side of those movies. The physical side of the movies was just the job. I had to do it. I trained, learned the fights, that’s kind of my brain not working. The rest of it, the look, the feel, the kind of the temperature of the movies, getting Sam Mendes in to direct ‘Skyfall,’ that’s where the hard work was. Going to the gym is hard work, but it’s not really brain hard work.”

Craig endured numerous injuries. He also had unprecedented input (compared to previous actors employed by Eon Productions) into the plot and other aspects of the movies.

The actor, a year after No Time to Die came out, claims it was his idea for his version of Bond to be killed.

“Two things, one for myself and one for the franchise,” Craig said. “One, for the franchise, was that resets start again, which [the franchise] did with me. And I was like, ‘Well, you need to reset again.’ So let’s kill my character off and go find another Bond and go find another story. Start at [age] 23, start at 25, start at 30.

To be sure, there’s a lot of after-the-fact story telling before and after a movie comes out. “When the legend becomes fact, print the legend,” which is a line from 1962’s The Man Who Shot Liberty Vallance. That’s still the case in the 21st century.

Quotes from Craig’s interviews have split Bond movie fans. Craig fans say that shows why he’s a great actor. Craig critics cite this why he’s selfish.

Whatever. It remains to be seen whether Eon gets on with the business of a post-Craig era.

Footnote to the cinematic 007’s 60th anniversary

Sean Connery in Dr. No: Sorry, Sir Sean, you’re in the back of the pack.

So, the 60th anniversary of the cinematic James Bond still is underway.

Lea Seydoux, who appeared in two of the 25 Eon-produced Bond films (8 percent of the series total), shared her favorite Bond moment on the official Eon Instagram account.

“There are so many, but the scene from NO TIME TO DIE – saying goodbye in the boat is so beautifully shot and poignant. Daniel’s final moments on screen, at the end of his five film run was very emotional for us all.”

That’s to be expected. This reflects Seydoux’s not-so-vast Bond film experience.

Still, the cinematic Bond’s 60th anniversary hasn’t been so much about the character’s long run on movie screens. It has been more about Daniel Craig’s long run as Bond, with Eon boss Barbara Broccoli as her primary backer.

Craig was the first Bond actor chosen by Barbara Broccoli. Pierce Brosnan was the final Bond chosen by Broccoli’s father, Albert R. “Cubby” Broccoli.

No Time to Die, Craig’s last Bond film, came out a year ago. We still hear about how he was a great Bond.

When does Eon finally let Craig go?

We don’t know. It will be *years* before the next film Bond debuts.

We’ll see.

When will Eon start looking forward?

Eon Productions, via its social media outlets, seems to remain firmly on the past of Daniel Craig’s tenure as James Bond.

Here are a sampling of tweets from Eon’s official Twitter account:

After the final day of shooting for No Time to Day, it would be a long time before Craig’s final Bond film would go before audiences in 2021.

Eon boss Barbara Broccoli said at the end of 2021 she wanted to celebrate Craig’s reign as Bond.

That celebration has continued long after the release of No Time to Die.

Eon has said it will take at least a couple of years before Bond 26 begins filming. There is no sign that schedule has been accelerated.

What should happen for Bond 26

Global James Bond Day has come and gone. There were no major announcements made related to the Eon film series.

With that in mind, what should happen with Bond 26 (whenever it comes out)? :

Bring David Arnold back

Part of the 60th-anniversary festivities was a documentary about the music of the Bond films. Watching that documentary, it’s clear that Eon Productions still adores the work of David Arnold.

Yet, Arnold hasn’t scored a Bond film since 2008’s Quantum of Solace.

Sam Mendes wanted, and got, Thomas Newman for his two Bond films (Skyfall and SPECTRE). Cary Fukunaga initially got his choice (Dan Romer). But he was rejected. So we got Hans Zimmer and his multiple enablers.

Zimmer even said the No Time to Die score was a collaboration between himself and Steve Mazzaro. When you sign Hans Zimmer, he’s not an artist. He’s more of a film-music conglomerate.

Next time out, just sign David Arnold.

Get on with it

For the past six months or so, Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson of Eon Productions have yammered about how hard it is to cast a new Bond.

Come on. Your father/stepfather switched gears and cast new Bond actors on the fly. (See what happened between May 1985 and July 1987.)

Get on with it. By this time, everybody knows about Ian Fleming, and James Bond, and how Fleming can be adapted to movies.

Bond 26 questions: The Variety interview edition

A previous Image for the official James Bond feed on Twitter

So, Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson gave an interview to Variety. The Eon Productions duo again said James Bond won’t return to theater screens soon and they’re looking for the next actor to make a long-time commitment.

However, there were other interesting tidbits. Naturally, the blog has questions.

How many Bond films will get made during an actor’s “10-, 12-year commitment”?

That’s the kind of commitment the Eon pair said they’re looking for from a new Bond actor. But at the current rate of production, that might only be three films. The Eon series had only two entries — Skyfall and SPECTRE — during the entire decade of the 2010s.

Yes, there were external factors, including Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer’s bankruptcy in 2010 and COVID-19 in 2020. But some of the gaps were self-imposed, including putting off the development of what became No Time to Die to try and get Daniel Craig back for another movie.

Will Bond 26 with a new actor really be that much different than Craig’s run?

One passage in the Variety story suggests not.

Both Wilson and Broccoli, who is a director of the U.K. chapter of women’s advocacy org Time’s Up, have left their mark on Bond, particularly in humanizing the once-womanizing spy and ensuring more fulfilling, meatier roles for the female stars of the franchise. These are qualities that will continue in the next films, says Broccoli. (emphasis added)

What are they up to in the interim?

Barbara Broccoli is one of the producers of Till, a fact-based film about the lynching of 14-year-old Emmett Till in 1955 and its aftermath. It’s due out next month. Wilson “has written a TV show that the duo are looking to set up,” according to Variety. And both are involved in producing an Amazon streaming show 007’s Road to a Million. That is currently in production, Variety says. Amazon also owns MGM.

How No Time to Die divided Bond fandom

No Time to Die soundtrack cover

Hindsight, it is said, is perfect. So, in hindsight, 2021’s No Time to Die was divisive in the James Bond fan base.

Some Bond fans love the 25th 007 film made by Eon Productions. Others *hate* it. James Bond is not supposed to die! But that’s what happened.

After the demise of Daniel Craig’s Bond in No Time to Die, Eon still is trying to figure out where to go next.

Eon boss Barbara Broccoli, who was always pushing for Craig, now has to confront her emotions. Craig, now into his 50s, *appears* to be done. (But who really knows?)

Historical note: Between 1985 and 1987, Eon not only made a big change in direction (going to a more serious direction) but cast *two* Bond actors. (Pierce Brosnan initially, then Timothy Dalton when Brosnan couldn’t get out of a television contract.)

Broccoli has said Bond 26 won’t start filming until at least two years from now. The Eon boss has said the production company is grappling with the future direction of the franchise.

We’ll see how it goes. In the “old days,” the Bond franchise could make big changes more quickly.

Regardless, Bond fandom has become more polarized, similar to society in general.

As U.K. celebrates Bond, U.S. fans are green with envy

James Bond film gunbarrel

James Bond is a product of the U.K. The character envelops U.K. citizens from birth and is a source of national pride.

It’s understandable that the 60th anniversary of the film franchise is a big deal. The movies are being shown in U.K. theaters. And even more is planned as the anniversary date of Dr. No’s debut approaches on Oct. 5.

At one time, Bond was a big deal in the U.S. as well. The gentleman spy had a fan in a U.S. president (John F. Kennedy). A prominent publisher (Hugh Hefner of Playboy magazine) was a big promoter of the character.

As recently as a generation ago, the U.S. was the site of two official James Bond fan conventions (1994 in Los Angeles, 1995 in New York City).

Today, not so much. American fans of Bond can only marvel at the U.K. events that are unfolding.

Early next month, tickets go on sale for British Film Institute events related to the 60th anniversary.

–Sept. 30 (tickets go on sale Aug. 4): Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson of Eon Productions will discuss “their careers and the Bond films, in a richly illustrated discussion featuring clips from their films.” Price: 15 British pounds (about $18). Program is scheduled for 90 minutes.

–Oct. 1: A program titled “James Bond behind the scenes: Stunts and VFX.” Tickets go on sale Aug. 4. Participants include Chris Corbould. Price: 15 British pounds. Program is scheduled for 80 minutes.

–Oct. 1: A program titled “The Sound of 007.” A description:

This new documentary reveals the history of seven decades of Bond music, from the genesis of 1962’s Dr. No and Monty Norman’s iconic theme song, through to 2021’s No Time to Die. The film charts the ups and downs of Bond soundtracks, combining interviews with stunning Bond archive material from the franchise’s 60-year journey.

Again, the price is 15 British pounds.

There are also a series of screenings of films made by Eon Productions.

Sept. 30: A 60th-anniversary screening of Dr. No.

Oct. 1: A 45th-anniversary screening of The Spy Who Loved Me.

–A 35th-anniversary screening of The Living Daylights.

–Oct. 2: A 10th-anniversary screening of Skyfall.

–Oct. 2: A screening of SPECTRE.

–Oct. 2: A screening of No Time to Die