James Bond is on the run, and like every woman who has sheltered him in the movies in these situations, five major Hollywood studios are fighting to give him a home.
For the last decade - or the four Daniel Craig movies - Sony has distributed the films. It has proven to be the series’ most profitable phase, with the total box office of the Craig movies surpassing $3.5 billion mark, adjusted for inflation.
Now, the New York Times reports, quoting several anonymous insiders, that Sony’s deal with the MGM and Eon (Everything or Nothing), the co-producers of the Bond series, ended with Spectre. The producers are now taking pitches from some of Hollywood’s biggest studios.
In contention - besides Sony, who put together an elaborate pitch from the same soundstage on which the first Bond film Dr No was shot - are Warner Bros, Universal Pictures, 20th Century Fox, and the odd one out, Annapurna Pictures. Annapurna is run by Megan Ellison, and is known mostly for critically acclaimed dramas like Her and American Hustle, but they’ve been looking for changing things up. The company distributed Seth Rogen’s adult animated film Sausage Party in 2016.
Paramount (who are in the middle of some major administrative changes after a string of flops) and Disney (who already own the rights to Marvel, Pixar and Star Wars) are sitting out.
While the report says that these studios stand to make little profit - if any - from the Bond films, they’re bidding mostly for bragging rights.
Every creative, casting, logistical and marketing decision is taken by Barbara Broccoli and her half-brother Michael Wilson, who’re in charge of Eon Productions, the family run home of James Bond.
So what does this mean for Daniel Craig? Would a new home mean a complete reboot for the series. Craig has been playing coy about returning since the 2015 release of Spectre. But the report says that the producers still hope for him to return - if only for one final adventure.
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