So far, releasing the next James Bond adventure, No Time to Die, has proven to be more difficult than any of the secret agents’ on-screen missions. With the movie currently scheduled to hit theaters in April next year, it seems that more delays could be in store as financial backers do not want the movie to be the first blockbuster out of the gate. On top of this, while we await to find out the logistics of vaccine roll-out, it is very possible that audiences will still not feel comfortable about returning to theaters as soon as next April.
Hollywood trade has revealed a report which claims that these same backers are concerned that, because James Bond movies tend to find their core audience in the older demographic, a huge chunk of fans will not venture out to theaters amid the current circumstances. Of course, several similar blockbusters have been given (or are at least being considered for) a streaming release, but with No Time to Die being a potential billion-dollar movie, investors don’t want to miss out on the revenue that would come from a theaterical release, and thus we may be waiting even longer before seeing Daniel Craig as 007 for the final time.
Following the most recent delay, director Cary Fukunaga did warn that this may happen saying, “I think there’s always the potential of (another delay). I look at it unemotionally right now… There are so many bigger things happening. I have friends who are losing businesses, restaurants, and other friends who have lost family members…The film will come out when it’s right and it will perform in the context of this new world, in which no one really can define what success or failure means.”
Previous reports have also revealed the heavy cost of delaying No Time to Die, with loans taken out by MGM in order to make the movie costing the studio $1 million in interest every month. Ongoing delays to release have meant that interest is rapidly building up and will not be paid off until the movie hits screens. “MGM is suffering,” said Hal Vogel, CEO of Vogel Capital Research, “Every major distributor at this point has a pile of unreleased expensive movies. The pile grows larger by the day. These films are inventory. They are sitting there with no return on their investment. Even with low interest rates, the interest costs are piling up. So going the streaming route is not that crazy. You’ve spent the money. And you’re not getting it back anytime soon.”
Directed by Cary Joji Fukunaga from a screenplay by Neal Purvis, Robert Wade, Fukunaga, and Phoebe Waller-Bridge, No Time to Die picks up five years after the capture of Ernst Stavro Blofeld, with James Bond having now left active service. He is approached by Felix Leiter, his friend, and a CIA officer, who enlists his help in the search for Valdo Obruchev, a missing scientist. When it becomes apparent that Obruchev was abducted, James Bond must confront a danger the likes of which the world has never seen before.