If there is one movie that defines the era of the film industry during the time of the pandemic, it has to be Bond 25 aka No Time to Die. It was Saturday night March 7, 2020 and Daniel Craig was hosting SNL. Like most hosts on Saturday Night Live, Craig had an important project about to come out the following month. Every commercial break had teasers and trailers for his upcoming movie No Time to Die and there was a lot of excitement about Craig’s final outing as MI6 agent 007.
Just 4 days after Daniel Craig was getting laughs at 30 Rockefeller Plaza, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared Covid-19 a pandemic and by the end of March the United States became the country hardest hit with 82,000 confirmed infections. Not only were people concerned, but the country was basically locked down right about the time Bond was set to hit the big screen. No Time to Die was the first huge budget film impacted by the virus and MGM had no choice but to pull the 300 million dollar film from release as theaters around the country began shutting their doors.
After theaters around the United States started to re-open, they found themselves with no movies to show. Movie studios had to find alternative ways to release their films to make a profit. Lucky for some, they had a platform to stream movies direct to consumers. Disney, for example, put their focus on their Disney+ streaming platform to recoup some of their profit. They did so via a new addition to the service “Premier access” charging subscribers a $30 fee to see their biggest hits. Others made deals with streaming services like Netflix and HBO Max. MGM studios, who had outbid others to release the Bond films, announced all their films would be releasing simultaneously in theaters and HBO Max, but Bond wasn’t part of that agreement.
Instead, No Time to Die was continually bumped to a new release date as some theaters showed signs of bringing in customers. With each new date seemed to come a new outbreak and another delay for 007. With about 60 percent of Americans vaccinated, people are finally feeling a little more comfortable returning to theaters. Disney/Marvel’s release of Shang- Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings had finally given movie distributors some confidence with a labor day record haul of 90 million dollars.
So, the date has been set once again for No Time to Die. It is now slated for an October 8th 2021 release in the United States and with tickets already on sale the distributor has proclaimed there is no turning back. After over a year and a half the audience will finally get to see Daniel Craig’s swan song as Bond, but will the movie be able to pull in the 300 million dollar budget? Stay tuned to Oh Brother to find out.