James Bond 25 is getting a rewrite. This project has had a really tough road to production, starting with the whole "Will he? Won't he?" back and forth with Daniel Craig when it came to whether or not he would return. But that was settled over a year ago and it's since been a struggle to get the right combination of director and script in place. We got one step closer to that when Cary Fukunaga (Beasts of No Nation, True Detective) came on board. Now, Scott Z. Burns has been tapped to get the script in shape.
According to a new report, Scott Z. Burns, whose previous credits include The Bourne Ultimatum, Side Effects and Contagion, has been brought on board to rewrite the current script. That script comes from Bond franchise veterans Neal Purvis and Robert Wade, who were brought back on board last September following Danny Boyle's departure. During Boyle's short tenure on the project, he had commissioned an entirely new script from John Hodge (Trainspotting). That script was abandoned once Boyle left and it was back to the drawing board.
Neal Purvis and Robert Wade have worked on every single entry in the franchise since 1999's The World is Not Enough. They almost always have help, often from John Logan (Alien: Covenant). This time will be no different, with Scott Z. Burns coming in to inject his sensibilities into the story. However, this isn't just a punch up, as it's being described as an "overhaul" and the report even speculates that he could be giving the top screenplay credit. The good news is, Burns has some time to get this done, as James Bond 25 was recently pushed back by nearly two full months from February 14, 2020, to April 8, 2020.
Aside from his actual writing credits, Scott Z. Burns is known in Hollywood for being a top script doctor. Mission: Impossible - Fallout director Christopher McQuarrie and Velvet Buzzsaw helmer Tony Gilroy have a similar reputation. While not credited for his work, Burns was brought in to do work on movies such as Ocean's 12, The Bourne Supremacy, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and, most recently, the heist/thriller Widows. Some of his other credits include an early draft of Dawn of the Planet of the Apes and David Fincher's unproduced 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.
Spectre was released in November 2015. That means, by the time this movie actually hits theaters, assuming things stay on track, it will be nearly four and a half years between installments, which will be the longest gap in the history of the franchise when the same actor has been playing the role of 007. While no casting has been made official, there are rumors that Rami Malek (Bohemian Rhapsody) is being eyed to play the main villain. We'll be sure to keep you posted as any further details on the project are made available. This news was first reported by The Playlist.