James Bond is an unrivaled special agent, a notorious ladies’ man, and a masculine icon whose lifestyle is pure rocket fuel for the imagination. You can finally let your imagination run wild for 2 hours and 43 minutes as you feast your eyes on No Time to Die on Friday unless you are part of the jet-set who attended a sneak preview in London last week.
The charming, good-looking super-spy came to life in 1953, the year Ian Fleming’s first novel was published. From a family of wealth and privilege, Mr. Fleming had first-hand experience living a luxurious life and that, coupled with his intelligence experience, provided perfect fodder for James Bond’s character development.
1953 was a big year:
- Dwight D. Eisenhower was inaugurated as POTUS 34
- Queen Elizabeth II was crowned at age 27
- American virologist Jonas Salk administered the polio vaccine he developed to himself, paving the way for it to become available for public use 2 years later
- British physicist Francis Crick and American biologist James Watson discovered the double-helix structure of human DNA
- Joseph Stalin, the son of a cobbler and head of the Soviet Union for 30 years, died after suffering a stroke at age 74
- The Korean War, a 3-year superpower clash over communism and democracy, ended in a stalemate without a peace treaty
- Cambodia became independent from France
- Sir Edmund Hillary, an explorer from New Zealand, and Tenzing Norgay, a Nepalese Sherpa, become the first to successfully climb to the summit of Mount Everest
- Color TVs went on sale to the public for the first time ever
- The Corvette was introduced to the American marketplace
This year marks the 25th James Bond movie to have been produced since the release of Dr. No in 1963 starring a relatively unknown Scottish actor, Sean Connery. And 2021 is a different world altogether. Perhaps the only commonality is the race to eradicate COVID-19 instead of polio.
No Time to Die was originally scheduled to be released in early 2020, just as the COVID-19 pandemic took hold. No Time to Die finally premiered at London’s Royal Albert Hall on September 28th, and will be released globally on Friday, October 8th. The unveiling included a star-studded audience, but Mr. Craig stole the limelight wearing a double-breasted cerise velvet dinner jacket with side vents, matching covered buttons, and turn-back cuffs.
Piers Morgan said: “You’re supposed to be a steely-eyed assassin with exemplary sartorial taste, Mr. Craig … not an Austin Powers tribute act”. I disagree, Mr. Morgan. Daniel Craig’s outfit was the epitome of chic.
We will miss Daniel Craig when he disappears into the night. What do we know about this man with blonde hair and blue eyes?
- He first played James Bond at 38 and is now 53 years old
- Of French and Welsh descent, he is the son of an art teacher and midshipman/steel erector/pub owner who eventually divorced
- You got it – he worked part-time in restaurants to finance his drama education
- Quite the ladies’ man himself, Craig is now married to Rachel Weisz and has 2 daughters
- He has played James Bond 5 times, taking a 6 year break since last filming Spectre
- When he was originally offered the James Bond role, it scared him to death: “I could be anonymous in this world. It was genuinely like, my life is going to get fucked if I do this”
- Skyfall (2012), his third Bond film, is the franchise’s highest-grossing production, raking in $304.4 million in the U.S. and $1.1 billion globally
- No doubt a factor in his retirement from the 007 role, Craig has experienced several injuries on set: he tore the labrum in his right shoulder, ruptured both calf muscles, and destroyed his anterior cruciate ligament
“You get tighter and tighter, and then you just don’t bounce … It feels like how the fuck are we going to do this?” (Daniel Craig, GQ)
Streaming on Apple TV until October 7th, “Being James Bond” is a 45 minute retrospective that features Daniel Craig reflecting on his 15 years playing Bond. And here’s a great article about the man himself:
“I’ve done him (Bond). I’ve given him all I can. He’s as there as he’ll ever be for me.” (Daniel Craig)
It seems Craig has also mastered the subtle art of comedy and self-satire. Take a look at this hilarious clip poking fun at Bond's notorious vices.
Daniel Craig’s next gig will be Macbeth, playing on Broadway, with previews expected to begin at the Lyceum Theater on March 29th, with an official opening on April 28th.
The next chapter in the James Bond franchise will be up to Barbara Broccoli (daughter of Albert “Cubby” Broccoli who established the Bond franchise with Canadian Harry Saltzman), who now runs Eon Productions with her half-brother, Michael G. Wilson. Neither will reveal their cards for the post-Craig era (surprise, surprise), but the rumor mill is in high gear, and here’s what we know:
“Bond can be of any color, but he is male. I believe we should be creating new characters for women – strong female characters. I’m not particularly interested in taking a male character and having a woman play it. I think women are far more interesting than that.” (Barbara Broccoli, Producer, Eon Productions)
In No Time to Die, Lashana Lynch plays Nomi, a new agent who inherits James Bond’s legendary code number:
“Nomi is a fine example of your modern-day woman who doesn’t take anything lying down and who gives everyone and anyone a run for their money. Mentally, physically, energetically and spiritually, she has everything covered so that whatever questions you had about women and this franchise are shot down completely.” (Lashana Lynch, LA Times)
Oh, one curve ball. MGM Studios has accepted a $8.45 billion offer from Amazon, which is still subject to regulatory approval. Let’s hope Amazon doesn’t screw with James Bond. What an appropriate word with which to end this blog, one that is a common element of Daniel Craig’s everyday vocabulary – except it starts with an F.
Now take what you’ve learned and play today’s James Bond Trivia Quiz of the Day:
1. Download Quizefy app.
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4. Have fun and Strut Your Smart!