In a since abandoned timeline that feels like an eternity ago, No Time to Die, then simply known as James Bond 25, would have hit theaters in November 2019. A lot has happened since then in the world and, at present, Daniel Craig's final go-around as the iconic MI6 spy is set for November of this year. However, it now appears as though a further delay into 2021 is on the table.
According to a new report, some studio executives now believe No Time to Die should be pushed to 2021. Originally, the movie was set to arrive on April 10, but was delayed to November 25 as current events worsened. It was the first major studio release to be pushed back, which has, unfortunately, become a widespread issue the industry is dealing with.
The problem at hand is that there remains a great deal of uncertainty when it comes to theatrical releases. It's expected that theaters in the U.S. will reopen in July. But it remains to be seen how many people will be willing to turn up, and if theater chains can sustain enough business to keep the doors open. With that in mind, the producers are said to be considering a 2021 date instead. Though, that presents its own set of unique challenges, as many movies that have also been pushed back have shifted to next year, making it difficult to find an attractive release date without too much direct competition.
One thing that remains certain is that the latest James Bond movie, which is directed by Cary Joji Fukunaga, will debut in theaters. The budget is reportedly in the dramatically steep $250 million range. There is no conceivable way a blockbuster of this size could make its money back, even with premium VOD pricing. Trolls World Tour recently had success for universal with a digital release, but its budget was said to be $90 million. That's a different ballpark altogether. An unnamed source close to the situation had this to say.
"If it has to wait till next year then so be it. There are hundreds of millions of dollars involved here. Release it when audiences feel safe to return. But it's a nerve-racking call."
Rami Malek (Bohemian Rhapsody) is playing the villain in Bond 25, with several familiar faces returning as well including Jeffrey Wright, Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris, Lea Seydoux and Ben Whishaw. Other new cast members include Ana de Armas and Lashana Lynch. MGM, it was previously reported, stands to lose around $30 million from the delay as it stands. If it is pushed even further to 2021, those losses could increase. Sadly, this probably won't be the only would-be blockbuster that will face a similarly tough road as things continue to unfold. This news was previously reported by Metro.