“No Time to Die,” Daniel Craig’s final bow as James Bond, has been delayed once again, and will now open on April 2, 2021. MGM and United Artists’ 007 action adventure was originally schedule to open in April 2020 in the United States and abroad, but was pushed to November, first to November 25, then November 20, in the U.S.
Buzz around the project is sky high after Craig’s beloved run of 007 films including franchise high points “Casino Royale” and “Skyfall” comes to an end. Is Craig saving the best for last? It’s the question Bond fans have been asking themselves for well over a year now.
In “No Time to Die,” directed by “Beasts of No Nation” and “True Detective” helmer Cary Fukunaga, Bond has left active service and is enjoying a tranquil life in Jamaica. His peace is short-lived when his old friend Felix Leiter from the CIA turns up asking for help. The mission to rescue a kidnapped scientist turns out to be far more treacherous than expected, leading Bond onto the trail of a mysterious villain armed with dangerous new technology.
Fukunaga reportedly had locked picture on “No Time to Die” before the pandemic shut down the industry, and didn’t return to the edit bay.
“Although time would have been lovely, we had to put our pencils down when we finished our post production window, which was thankfully before COVID shut down everything else,” Fukunaga said earlier this year. “The short answer is money. Although Bond is a big movie, we still have to weigh cost with value. And like anything, you could tinker endlessly. The movie is great as it is, hope ya’ll will feel same too when it comes out.”
Joining Craig in his final Bond movie are returning franchise actors Lea Seydoux, Jeffrey Wright, Ben Whishaw, Ralph Fiennes, and Naomie Harris. Newcomers include “Captain Marvel” breakout Lashana Lynch and “Bohemian Rhapsody” Oscar winner Rami Malek as the villain.
Other major blockbusters to delay their release dates this year include Warner Bros. Pictures’ “Wonder Woman 1984,” now opening Christmas Day. Disney similarly delayed a wave of major blockbusters in September, with Steven Spielberg’s “West Side Story” going December 10, 2021, instead of December 18, 2020, moving it entirely out of this year’s Oscar season. Marvel tentpole “Black Widow,” starring Scarlett Johansson in the title role, was set to debut November 6 of this year, but Disney pushed it to May 7, 2021.