Friday, January 14, 2011

James Bond will return

Last April alarm bells were ringing that the production of the 23rd James Bond film had to be put on hold due to financial issues. Long story short the production company MGM had to sort out it’s future and it’s worrying bankruptcy issues. Thankfully they have been resolved and a restructure of the company has taken place. Teetering on the brink of bankruptcy and at the mercy of its creditors, MGM was in the news for more than a year because of its financial woes.

It was to considerable relief that MGM announced on Tuesday that production of the new James Bond film will begin shooting late 2011. Long-standing producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli announced that the 23rd James Bond outing will be given a worldwide release date of 9th November 2012. This will incidentally fall on the 50th anniversary of one of the most successful movie franchises of all time.

There are confirmed reports that Daniel Craig will return as the British Secret Service Agent and will be directed by Oscar Winning Director Sam Mendes. There had been fears with MGM’s future in doubt that Craig wouldn’t return as 007. But fans can be at ease now with the franchise continuing and dates confirmed for the next Bond outing currently entitled James Bond 23. The Layer Cake actor has a busy 2011 with starring in the American remake of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo currently filming. That commenced straight after filming of Jon Faverau’s Summer Blockbuster Cowboys and Aliens came to a close.

Writers from the previous two Bond movies Robert Wade and Neal Purvis will continue with scripting duties with fellow writer John Logan on board. Casting will now commence for the film. This will certainly be an intriguing process for Sam Mendes who was originally going to be a “consultant” for the film before MGM’s problems came about.

As he is now officially going to be in the director’s chair there are a flurry of rumours around who might join Daniel Craig. So long as Mendes wont be making any radical changes, it’s almost certain Judi Dench will reprise her role as M. In terms of the villian, Michael Sheen has been thrown out there as a potential baddie. Simon Russell Beale who unknown to some is an acclaimed British theatre actor is rumoured for the role and was even quoted in a UK newspaper saying, “every actor wants to be in Bond [and] I'd love to be a baddie."

James Bond is easily MGM's most profitable franchise. The 22 Bond movies are third in the list of most successful film franchises, according to the website Box Office Mojo. The last film in the series, 2008's Quantum of Solace, made $586m (£381.6m) worldwide. The 2006 movie Casino Royale, which unveiled Craig as a meaner Bond, took in $594m.

Fans worldwide will surely now be celebrating with a Martini that James Bond will return!

Written By Michael Cunneen

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