We can stop calling it Bond 25. The new James Bond movie is officially titled No Time to Die, and Daniel Craig's fifth (and possibly final) turn as 007 is already shaping up to be less Quantum of Solace, more Skyfall.
That's because, with just over six months to go until the confirmed No Time to Die release date, there's now plenty of exciting Bond 25 news, images, and set photos to tide you over until April 2020. We'll go through all of the essentials down below.
We can't forget about the No Time to Die cast list, either. Already confirmed is fascinating blend of familiar faces, such as Ben Whishaw, Naomie Harris, and Jeffrey Wright, plus newcomers, including Lashana Lynch, who has been tipped to replace 007. The actors and actresses are being backed up by Phoebe Waller-Bridge, who has been parachuted in to punch up the script. Meanwhile, The Bond 25 villain, played by Rami Malek, has been kept mostly under wraps, but some interesting quotes from the Academy Award winner are just a quick scroll away, too.
So, it's time to get the full lowdown on Bond 25. Grab your nearest bottle of Bollinger, crank up the Monty Norman theme tune up several notches, and get comfortable. Here's everything you need to know about No Time to Die.
- Bond 25 release date: April 3, 2020 (UK)/April 8, 2020 (US)
- Bond 25 director: Cary Fukunaga
- Bond 25 cast: Daniel Craig, Rami Malek, Léa Seydoux, Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris, Ben Whishaw, Rory Kinnear, Jeffrey Wright, Ana de Armas, Lashana Lynch, David Dencik, Billy Magnussen, Dali Benssalah
- Bond 25 writers: Neal Purvis, Robert Wade, Scott Burns, Phoebe Waller-Bridge
Bond 25 release date
Originally, the Bond 25 release date was scheduled for October 25, 2019 in the UK, and a little later on November 8, 2019 in the States… but Danny Boyle's unexpected departure as director threw several spanners in the works.
As is often the case with 007 movies, UK viewers will get to see Bond 25 before their American counterparts (he does work for Her Majesty, after all) – No Time to Die will release in British cinemas from April 3, 2020, while US audiences will have to wait until April 8, 2020.
Spectre materialised in October 2015, so hopefully the exceedingly long wait (well over four years!) for the Bond 25 release date will be worth it – until then, you'll just have to rewatch the best James Bond movies. A couple of times. And pray that Daniel Craig doesn't injure himself again.
Bond 25 director
Cary Fukunaga joined as Bond 25 director in September 2018, as confirmed on the official James Bond Twitter account less than a month after it was revealed that Danny Boyle had exited the project due to “creative differences”. The Guardian reported that Boyle, who previously helmed the likes of Trainspotting and Slumdog Millionaire, quit as Bond 25 director because the producers weren't happy with the script written by his regular collaborator John Hodge. “I work in partnership with writers and I am not prepared to break it up...” he said. “We were working very, very well, but they didn’t want to go down that route with us. So we decided to part company.”
Bond 25 director Fukunaga is best known for his work as director of True Detective season 1, but he has also given us films like Beasts of No Nation, Jane Eyre, and, Netflix Original, Maniac. In a Twitter statement, producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson said of their new recruit: “We are delighted to be working with Cary. His versatility and innovation make him an excellent choice for our next James Bond adventure."
This is exciting news, though perhaps a little bit surprising seeing as Fukunaga left True Detective season 2 and the It movie amid creative disagreements with collaborators. You would think that, after Danny Boyle's conscious uncoupling, the production team would naturally look for a Bond 25 director with less of a track record for jumping ship – on the other hand, their decision to bring Fukunaga on board suggests they're committed to making this Bond film as special and memorable as 007 himself.
Bond 25 cast
Daniel Craig is back as Bond for the fifth time, following his starring roles in Casino Royale, Quantum of Solace, Skyfall, and Spectre. There was, for a time, speculation that we might be getting a new Bond to head up the Bond 25 cast – particularly after Craig's astonishing interview with Time Out in 2015, where he proclaimed that he would "rather break this glass and slash my wrists” than appear in another Bond flick.
Craig later confirmed that his mind had U-turned on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert in August 2017. “Yes,” he replied when asked if he was returning. "We've been discussing it, we've just been trying to figure things out… I always wanted to, I needed a break.”
The actor also confirmed this will be his last film as 007 film. "I just want to go out on a high note, and I can't wait,” he told Colbert. One assumes by "high note" he doesn't mean in a hospital bed, as shooting had to shut down earlier this year thanks to an ankle injury picked up on set by Craig.
Bond 25 will introduce a new 007
With Craig leaving the franchise, it should come as no surprise that the big wigs at Eon productions – who are behind the series – already have plans in motion of who could replace the actor as 007. Step forward Lashana Lynch, the actress best known for appearing in Captain Marvel alongside Brie Larson.
According to a widely publicised report by The Mail, Bond 25 will begin with Craig's Bond having retired to Jamaica and Lynch's character having taken over as 007. However, a new villain, presumably played by Rami Malek (more on him later), will pose such a great threat that MI6 will have to recruit the old 007 for help.
“There is a pivotal scene at the start of the film where M says, 'Come in 007', and in walks Lashana who is black, beautiful and a woman,” the apparent 'movie insider' said. “It’s a popcorn-dropping moment. Bond is still Bond but he’s been replaced as 007.”
Elsewhere, there'll be several cast returns, as this era of Bond continues to be among the most consistent in terms of supporting players. Regular 007 sidekicks Ralph Fiennes (M), Naomie Harris (Moneypenny), Ben Whishaw (Q), Rory Kinnear (Tanner) and Jeffrey Wright (Felix Leiter) are all back in the saddle for Bond 25. And intriguingly, so is Léa Seydoux, whose Madeleine Swann was last seen with Bond at the end of Spectre – a rare return for a Bond movie love interest.
There are also a handful of newcomers joining No Time to Die. Those fresh faces entering 007’s orbit includes Ana de Armas (Blade Runner 2049), David Dencik (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo), Billy Magnussen (Velvet Buzzsaw) and French newcomer Dali Benssalah – though who they're actually playing is anyone's guess.
Bond 25 villain
Beyond 007, the big Bond 25 cast news is that Bohemian Rhapsody Oscar-winner and Mr Robot star Rami Malek is definitely on board, confirming months of rumours. And it's almost definite that he's playing the villain – why else would he say at the Bond 25 launch in April that: “I promise you all I will be making sure Mr Bond does not have an easy ride of it in this, his 25th outing.” You can almost hear the maniacal laughter.
Malek has even teased his role as the baddie, telling The Mirror that he had a specific demand for his character's motivations: "I said, ‘We cannot identify him with any act of terrorism reflecting an ideology or a religion. That’s not something I would entertain."
Christoph Waltz will also reportedly reprise his role as the villainous Ernst Stavro Blofeld, who was left incarcerated – but still alive – at the end of Spectre. Quizzed about the return of Waltz and Ben Whishaw back in November, Fukunaga told Inquirer: "Those are two extraordinary actors, so if there is space for them in the story, I would absolutely want them there. But I don’t know yet what it’s going to be.”
Waltz has since been seen at the iconic Pinewood Studios, where every 007 movie, from Dr. No to Skyfall, has filmed scenes. After supposedly being spotted by someone visiting the Bond 25 set, Waltz said: “You haven’t seen me.”
Bond 25 plot
We suspect you’d have to sign the Official Secrets Act to get anywhere near the Bond 25 plot – and even then, you'd be locked in a cell until the movie's release, just to make sure you didn't blab. Even so, there are a few tidbits of the No Time to Die story in general circulation, as long-time 007 producer Barbara Broccoli confirmed at the movie’s launch in Jamaica that: “Bond is not on active service when we start the film, he is actually enjoying himself in Jamaica. So he starts his journey [there].”
It seems likely that Bond is enjoying some extended R&R with Ms. Swann when the movie begins – fingers crossed things don't go as badly as they did for Jason Bourne’s vacation at the start of The Bourne Supremacy.
Unfortunately, the official Bond 25 synopsis doesn’t bode well for any romantic getaways. “His peace is short-lived when his old friend Felix Leiter from the CIA turns up asking for help," it reads. "The mission to rescue a kidnapped scientist turns out to be far more treacherous than expected, leading Bond onto the trail of a mysterious villain armed with dangerous new technology.”
We've actually been given a sneak peek at the Jamaica scenes recently, thanks to the 007 Twitter account. Leiter is looking the little worse for wear in scenes that harken back to 007's original movie outing, Dr. No, which was also set in Jamaica.
Of course, it wouldn't be a Bond flick without a trip back to London. Jamaica is the starting point, but it seems like Daniel Craig's secret agent will be going back to his roots. A recent behind-the-scenes post reveals that a Bond 25 location will, unsurprisingly, be London. Bond even has one of his trademark cars in tow: the Aston Martin V8, last seen in Timothy Dalton's The Living Daylights.
Another shooting location could also clue us in on the plot. Bond is heading back to Scotland for the first time since Skyfall, if recent filming plans (as revealed by British newspaper The Daily Mail) ring true. But don't expect a Skyfall Lodge return; that was actually filmed in Surrey, England. Sorry to disappoint.
007 star Daniel Craig, director Cary Fukunaga and the #Bond25 crew were out in the sunshine today shooting across a number of London locations, including Whitehall, where Daniel filmed a scene with a classic @astonmartin V8, first seen in a Bond film in THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS. pic.twitter.com/rhs13nNeyWJune 30, 2019
Meanwhile, the Daily Mail has reported that the plot will involve genetic warfare – and that another reason Waller-Bridge came on board (at Daniel Craig’s insistence) was to make the complicated science understandable to cinema audiences.
“The movie's premise is genetic warfare, which is fascinating – but you gotta boil it down and make it accessible,” said an unknown source from production. “That's why Phoebe was hired. She has somehow made sense of it.
“There aren't many people in the world bright enough to bring some humour to the topic of genetics and the Human Genome Project.”
Bond 25 trailer
No Bond 25 trailer... yet. That doesn’t stop anyone predicting its due date, though. Skyfall’s first trailer came in May 2012, five months before the film’s October release, while our first glimpse of Spectre in motion emerged in March 2015, with the film itself out seven months later. Assuming Bond 25 adheres to a similar pattern, we should see its first trailer from November at the latest.
In fact, the closest we've got to a teaser or trailer for No Time to Die is the Bond 25 title announcement video.
Bond 25 title
The Bond 25 title is set in stone: say hello to No Time to Die.
As is the case with most Bonds, it's an ominous-sounding affair. There's always a lot of Kills and Dying in these titles: A View to a Kill, License to Kill, and Die Another Day are just a few examples. There's also Quantum of Solace, so perhaps it was best to stick to the classics.
No Time to Die was revealed alongside a snazzy logo in a video that featured Daniel Craig looking exceedingly squave. The title doesn't tell us much, but the noir stylings of the logo (which you could see above) may clue us in on this being a darker tale for 007, and a fitting farewell to Craig's hard-as-nails ouevre.
Bond 25 theme
Securing a Bond theme is one of the most illustrious achievements in the entertainment business, with the last two going to Sam Smith (Spectre) and Adele (Skyfall). If long-standing rumours in the UK press such as The Daily Mail are to believed, Beyonce is being lined up for the next one.
A source close to the singer is purported to have proclaimed this “the only project she is remotely interested in right now”. She’s said to have met with the film’s bosses, “and Adele told her how co-writing and performing a Bond theme gave her an amazing career hike.” As if that pair aren’t already among the most successful female artists of all time…