Bond producers pay tribute to ‘film icon’ Honor Blackman

James Bond producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson have paid tribute to late Goldfinger star Honor Blackman.The British actress, famed for portraying Bond girl Pussy Galore in the 1964 movie opposite Sean Connery as 007, passed away from natur…

James Bond producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson have paid tribute to late Goldfinger star Honor Blackman.

The British actress, famed for portraying Bond girl Pussy Galore in the 1964 movie opposite Sean Connery as 007, passed away from natural causes at the age of 94 on Monday.

Accordingly, franchise producers Broccoli and Wilson were quick to offer up their condolences over the sad news.

In a statement posted on the official James Bond Twitter page, they wrote: “Today we mark the passing of a film icon, Honor Blackman who shall forever be remembered as Pussy Galore in Goldfinger. She was an extraordinary talent and a beloved member of the Bond family. Our thoughts are with her family at this time.”

Meanwhile, her friend, Swedish actress Britt Ekland, who featured in 1974 Bond movie The Man with the Golden Gun, paid homage to Blackman on her social media pages too.

“As Pussy Galore, you were one of the first Bond Girls and as Mary Goodnight, I am proud to have followed in your footsteps, we did some fun things together over the years! Rip Honor Blackman,” she commented.

Other tributes came from Star Trek icon William Shatner, British comedian David Walliams, and director Edgar Wright, who branded Blackman the “ultimate Bond Girl”.

In addition, her The Upper Hand co-star Joe Mugg shared a photo of the cast of the 1990s sitcom online and added his memories of working alongside the screen legend.

“Just heard the very sad news that dear Honor has died,” he posted. “What a woman she was – fiercely bright, superbly funny and a wonderful actress on screen and onstage. I loved every day of working with her and I loved and respected her with all my heart RIP.”

© Cover Media

The Rhythm Section producers ‘disappointed’ by box office failure

Producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson are “obviously disappointed” by the box office performance of their new movie The Rhythm Section.Reed Morano’s film, in which Blake Lively plays a grieving woman who sets out for revenge after discoverin…

Producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson are “obviously disappointed” by the box office performance of their new movie The Rhythm Section.

Reed Morano’s film, in which Blake Lively plays a grieving woman who sets out for revenge after discovering the plane crash that killed her family wasn’t an accident, opened in cinemas on Friday and grossed just $2.8 million (£2.16 million) for its first three days during Super Bowl weekend, marking the worst box office opening in history for a title playing in over 3,000 theatres.

According to Deadline, Paramount Pictures will likely lose between $30 million and $40 million (£30.9 million – £23.2 million) on the movie, which debuted at number 10 on the U.S. box office chart, behind the likes of Bad Boys for Life, Dolittle, and 1917.

Responding to its performance, the producers, who are best known for overseeing the James Bond franchise, issued a statement to the film publication.

“We are obviously disappointed with the box office, but we’re proud of Reed and our movie and the overwhelmingly positive reaction to Blake’s performance,” they said.

The film, which also starred Jude Law and Sterling K. Brown, had a troubled production, as it was shut down for six months after Lively sustained a nasty hand injury that required surgery. The release date was pushed back multiple times from its original February 2019 slot.

Over the weekend, Morano posted a picture of her with Lively at the movie premiere on Instagram and gushed about her leading lady in the caption.

“Thank you for taking this absolutely insane epic journey with me. Loads of twists and turns we never saw coming & wasn’t always easy but we navigated it together & no matter how difficult it was, we always made sure to have a blast & for f**ks sake- you gave it EVERYTHING – including your freakin hand!!! Words cannot describe how proud I am of what you do in this film- wait till people see (sic)!!” she wrote.

© Cover Media

Billie Eilish to perform theme song for No Time to Die

Billie Eilish has been tapped to perform the theme song for new James Bond film No Time to Die.Producers confirmed that the Bad Guy singer had signed on to perform the title track for the upcoming spy movie on Tuesday, with the gig making her the young…

Billie Eilish has been tapped to perform the theme song for new James Bond film No Time to Die.

Producers confirmed that the Bad Guy singer had signed on to perform the title track for the upcoming spy movie on Tuesday, with the gig making her the youngest artist in the history of the franchise to the tackle the theme.

Billie has teamed up with her older brother and frequent collaborator, Finneas O’Connell, to work on the tune, described by Bond producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli as “an incredibly powerful and moving song”.

Gushing about the historic role, the 18-year-old shared, “It feels crazy to be a part of this in every way. To be able to score the theme song to a film that is part of such a legendary series is a huge honour. James Bond is the coolest film franchise ever to exist. I’m still in shock.”

While Finneas added, “Writing the theme song for a Bond film is something we’ve been dreaming about doing our entire lives. There is no more iconic pairing of music and cinema than the likes of Goldfinger and Live and Let Die. We feel so, so lucky to play a small role in such a legendary franchise, long live 007.”

Elsewhere, director Cary Joji Fukunaga insisted that James Bond fans will instantly fall in love with the song.

“There are a chosen few who record a Bond theme,” he commented. “I am a huge fan of Billie and Finneas. Their creative integrity and talent are second to none and I cannot wait for audiences to hear what they’ve brought – a fresh new perspective whose vocals will echo for generations to come.”

The track will be released to coincide with the global launch of No Time to Die, starring Daniel Craig, in April.

Billie follows in the footsteps of artists like Sam Smith, Adele, and Shirley Bassey in landing the prestigious honour.

© Cover Media

Scott Z. Burns to rewrite Bond 25 script – report

Screenwriter Scott Z. Burns has reportedly been drafted in to rewrite the Bond 25 script. According to a report by The Playlist, The Bourne Ultimatum writer has been brought in to overhaul the current screenplay by Neal Purvis and Robert Wade, followi…

Screenwriter Scott Z. Burns has reportedly been drafted in to rewrite the Bond 25 script.

According to a report by The Playlist, The Bourne Ultimatum writer has been brought in to overhaul the current screenplay by Neal Purvis and Robert Wade, following the news that the film’s release has been pushed back by two months to April 2020.

Bond producers had reportedly been courting Burns for months to get him onboard for a rewrite, but he was busy with his own directorial feature The Report, which received much acclaim when it debuted at the Sundance Film Festival in January.

Burns is now in London and will be spending at least four weeks working on the script, according to the report.

Burns is one of Hollywood’s go-to script doctors, doing uncredited rewrites on films such as Ocean’s Twelve and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, in addition to his credited work on The Mercy and Steven Soderbergh movies like Contagion, Side Effects and the upcoming The Laundromat, a drama starring Gary Oldman and Meryl Streep inspired by the Panama Papers scandal.

Over the weekend, Bond producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli announced that the 25th instalment would be hitting cinemas on 8 April 2020 instead of its previously scheduled date of Valentine’s Day 2020. The film had originally been scheduled for release this November (19) but it was pushed back after original director, Slumdog Millionaire’s Danny Boyle, quit due to creative differences and was replaced by True Detective’s Cary Joji Fukunaga.

Filming was originally scheduled to begin in March at Pinewood Studios near London but it is unclear if this is still the case. Daniel Craig is back for his fifth turn as 007 and will be joined by returning stars Lea Seydoux, Ben Whishaw, Naomie Harris, and Ralph Fiennes.

© Cover Media

Cary Fukunaga to direct Bond 25

Cary Fukunaga will replace Danny Boyle as the director of Bond 25. The Slumdog Millionaire moviemaker left the 25th instalment of the spy franchise in August (18) due to creative differences, leaving many to speculate that the film would no longer mak…

Cary Fukunaga will replace Danny Boyle as the director of Bond 25.

The Slumdog Millionaire moviemaker left the 25th instalment of the spy franchise in August (18) due to creative differences, leaving many to speculate that the film would no longer make its November 2019 release.

On Thursday (20Sep18), producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli and lead actor Daniel Craig announced that they had found a new director – True Detective’s Cary Foji Fukunaga – and confirmed that the release had been pushed back by three months.

“Michael G. Wilson, Barbara Broccoli and Daniel Craig announced today that #Bond25 will begin filming at Pinewood Studios on 4 March 2019 under the helm of director, Cary Joji Fukunaga with a worldwide release date of 14 February 2020,” a tweet on the official 007 account reads.

Wilson and Broccoli said in a statement, “We are delighted to be working with Cary. His versatility and innovation make him an excellent choice for our next James Bond adventure.”

This means Fukunaga has made history by becoming the first American to direct a film in the Bond franchise.

The news comes a day before Fukunaga’s latest project, dark comedy TV series Maniac, starring Emma Stone and Jonah Hill, hits Netflix. The 41-year-old, who won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series for True Detective, has also directed films including 2009’s Sin Nombre, 2011’s Jane Eyre, and 2015’s Beasts of No Nation. He was originally set to direct the 2017 horror remake It, but departed the project in 2015 due to creative differences.

In a Radio Times interview that was conducted before he quit Bond, Boyle admitted his love for Ian Fleming’s books could be a problem.

“The books were everything to me when I was a kid,” he said. “I think it’d be impossible for a Bond aficionado to write or direct a Bond film. You’d be hampered by how much you knew. They want you to bring a freshness to it.”

© Cover Media

Danny Boyle exits latest Bond movie

Filmmaker Danny Boyle has exited the new James Bond movie due to creative differences with the project’s producers. Bond bosses Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli and the film’s star Daniel Craig have confirmed reports suggesting the Slumdog Milli…

Filmmaker Danny Boyle has exited the new James Bond movie due to creative differences with the project’s producers.

Bond bosses Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli and the film’s star Daniel Craig have confirmed reports suggesting the Slumdog Millionaire filmmaker has walked away from the 25th 007 adventure.

“Michael G. Wilson, Barbara Broccoli and Daniel Craig today announced that due to creative differences Danny Boyle has decided to no longer direct Bond 25,” a statement posted on the official James Bond Twitter account reads.

Boyle revealed he would be taking charge of Craig’s final Bond film in March (18), after confirming he and his writing partner John Hodge were working on a screenplay for the movie.

“We are working on a script right now,” he told America’s Metro newspaper. “And it all depends on that really. I am working on a Richard Curtis script at the moment. We hope to start shooting that in six or seven weeks. Then Bond would be right at the end of the year. But we are working on them both right now.”

John and Danny previously worked together on films including Shallow Grave, Trainspotting, and The Beach.

In February, editors at Variety reported that the 61-year-old director was at the top of Bond bosses’ wish list to take charge of their new film.

Revealing that he and John already had some inspiration for the plot, Danny added, “We’ve got an idea and John is writing it at the moment. And it all depends on how it turns out. It would be foolish of me to give any of it away.”

Boyle would have been the successor to Sam Mendes, who directed the last two Bond films, Skyfall and Spectre.

Production on Bond 25 is still set to begin in December, ahead of a November, 2019 release date.

© Cover Media