2020 has seen daily life thrown into absolute chaos due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. With lockdowns in place all over the world and social distancing the need of the hour, public gatherings of any sort have become impossible. Thus, we have seen sports events being cancelled or postponed globally, while any other event which would lead to a crowd of people at one place has also been removed from the agenda for the time being.
One of the worst-hit sectors in this regard is the movie business. Movie theatres cannot operate in the current climate, and so as they have downed shutters, we have seen the release of some of the biggest and most anticipated movies be delayed by months. The likes of Tenet and Black Widow, which would have been guaranteed to make hundreds of millions of dollars at the box office globally, have all seen their release dates pushed to the second half of the year, and there are doubts about whether even those dates can be met given the rate at which the virus continues to spread throughout the world.
Another eagerly awaited movie which has suffered the same fate is the latest James Bond movie, No Time To Die. This Bond film, whenever it does come onto the big screen, will be the end of an era, as it will mark the last outing for Daniel Craig as 007. Back in 2006, when Craig first appeared on our screens as Bond in Casino Royale, there was no way to know that he would become one of the most iconic casting choices in the history of the franchise. There had been a lot of criticism of this choice, with fans up in the air at the thought of a blonde-haired actor playing the role of James Bond, who was supposed to be dark-haired. Craig was also supposed to be not fit enough to take on the demands of the role, but he quickly put paid to those rumours with the now-iconic scene on the beach in Casino Royale. Craig has successfully managed to turn the majority of his detractors around, and is now widely thought of as the best Bond since Sean Connery.
No Time To Die will mark Daniel Craig’s fifth and final appearance as 007, with a number of cast members returning to resume their roles as well. The likes of Lea Seydoux, Christoph Waltz, Ralph Fiennes, Jeffrey Wright, Ben Whishaw and Naomie Harris all return to the franchise, which also sees Lashana Lynch, Ana de Armas and Rami Malek join the cast. While the production of the movie did see some trouble, with Oscar-winner Danny Boyle initially directing the movie but then stepping away due to creative differences with the studio, the film was then taken over by Cary Fukanaga, while one of the screenplay writers is the much-acclaimed Phoebe Waller-Bridge.
Given that this will be Craig’s last appearance as Bond, it is appropriate to take a look back at his very first appearance in the role, back in Casino Royale. The movie, which was set amidst the backdrop of a VIP gambling session in Montenegro at the Casino Royale, where Bond manages to outwit the villain Le Chiffre despite suffering a number of setbacks due to his inexperience at the beginning. Mads Mikkelsen was brilliant as Le Chiffre, and Casino Royale set the rest of Craig’s journey as Bond in motion, with a number of themes and storylines continuing and evolving over the next three movies, Quantum of Solace, Skyfall and Spectre, to arrive at where we are now.
Despite the movie release being delayed to November, and the prospect of another postponement looming, fans have not lost their excitement for this movie, and it will definitely be one of the biggest movies of the year whenever it does get released.