October 20, 2021

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FILM PREVIEW: NO TIME TO DIE (2021)

Shake, not stir. James Bond’s adventures in hunting down criminals, while sleeping with beautiful girls and enjoying Martini cocktails, are finally back in No Time to Die. The Bond 25 film made by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) Studios and Eon Productions will be officially released in cinemas in Indonesia on September 30 and in America on October 8, 2021.

Confirmation of the release of No Time to Die in theaters was announced by MGM Studios and United Artists Releasing, as distributors, at CinemaCon 2021 on August 24 last. Previously, there had been rumors that the film, made by director Cary Joji Fukunaga, would be released on a paid streaming platform.

As we all know, the Covid-19 pandemic has caused cinemas around the world to close. As a result, many blockbuster films, including No Time to Die, are in danger of failing to appear on the big screen. One of the most realistic options is to release those blockbuster films on paid streaming platforms. However, even so, after going through various considerations, finally, it was decided that the 25th James Bond film would still be showing in theaters.

At the CinemaCon 2021 event, Michael De Luca, Chairman of the MGM Motion Picture Group, admitted that he had made a tough decision. Everything is done so that fans can still watch No Time to Die. He emphasized that it is important for MGM Studios to release this film so that fans can watch James Bond’s action properly. That is, on the big screen. Not on the paid streaming screen.

Like the previous James Bond films, No Time to Die is also a big-budget blockbuster. Therefore, the film, which costs up to USD 300 million, must be shown in theaters when the Covid-19 pandemic is under control. This is done so that MGM Studios does not lose and can reap maximum profits at the box office.

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Previously, No Time to Die had been delayed five times. When it was first announced in 2017, the film, which was originally going to be directed by Danny Boyle, was scheduled to be released in November 2019. However, after Boyle was kicked out in August 2018, the release schedule had to be postponed. In fact, up to two times. From November 2019 to February 2020, then it was postponed again to April 2020.

After that, came the Covid-19 pandemic. The release schedule for No Time to Die had to be postponed again. From April to November 2020, then to April 2021. However, because at the beginning of this year the pandemic was still not over, MGM Studios was forced to revamp its release schedule again. From April to October 2021.

Due to the postponement of No Time to Die’s broadcast schedule, MGM Studios is said to have suffered a loss of USD 30-50 million. Understandably, they have started promoting this film since early 2020. In fact, the original soundtrack sung by Billie Eilish has already been released. Likewise with the special tv spots that aired in the 2020 Super Bowl event.

In addition to the change of directors and the Covid-19 pandemic, several obstacles that occurred during the production process also delayed the release schedule of No Time to Die. One of them was the ankle injury suffered by the main actor, Daniel Craig, in May 2019. In addition, there was also a crew member who was injured by an explosion during filming. As a result, the production process had to be postponed.

During his role as James Bond, Daniel Craig was often injured. In fact, he immediately lost two teeth while filming his first Bond film: Casino Royale (2006). After that, his shoulder and rib muscles were injured, and his fingertips were cut off, during the production of Quantum of Solace (2008). Furthermore, while filming SPECTRE (2015), Craig suffered a knee injury. As a result, the film production process was delayed for two weeks.

Meanwhile, the title No Time to Die itself was only announced during Global James Bond Day which fell on October 5, 2019. The moment was launched to commemorate the first James Bond film, entitled Dr. No, which was released on October 5, 1962 ago. The former starring the late Sean Connery.

At that time, in addition to announcing the official title of James Bond 25, MGM Studios also released the first poster of No Time to Die. Which features Daniel Craig as a member of British intelligence coded 007. In the poster, Bond is wearing a tuxedo suit, which has become his trademark so far, is seen standing in front of a turquoise-colored wall.

The fans immediately examined the first poster of No Time to Die. In fact, they were then able to identify the location where the James Bond photo was taken in the poster. Turns out, the turquoise-colored wall was the same as the photo backdrop when Prince Charles visited the filming location. To be precise, at Pinewood Studios, England. At the beginning of 2019. The venue called Palacio Velazquez, reportedly, describes the location of the breast milk in Cuba.

The fans then speculated. Perhaps, the location in the first No Time to Die poster has something to do with the character Paloma (Ana de Armas). Which, it is said, comes from Cuba. Perhaps, that’s where James Bond first met him. In addition, Cuba is also located not far from Jamaica. The location where Bond, it is said, decides to retire. Before, finally, his old friend, American secret agent Felix Leiter (Jeffrey Wright) of the CIA, asks for his help.

Producer Barbara Broccoli revealed, No Time to Die does present a different story when compared to the previous James Bond films. At the beginning of this film, it is said, five years after the events in the previous film, Bond has retired. Ian Fleming’s fictional character is no longer acting as a secret agent. He is enjoying his break in Jamaica.

According to Barbara Broccoli, the production team felt Jamaica was James Bond’s spiritual home. Therefore, the process of filming No Time to Die is often done in Ian Fleming’s private villa in Jamaica. The villa, which is located in the Caribbean Islands, has previously appeared in GoldenEye (1995). Which became Pierce Brosnan’s first Bond film.

Based on the official synopsis released by MGM Studios, in No Time to Die, James Bond is on a mission to save a kidnapped scientist. However, as it turned out, the mission turned out to be much more dangerous than imagined. Because the mission brings Bond to the trail of a mysterious villain. Armed with new technology that threatens the lives of millions of people.

In addition to announcing the certainty of No Time to Die showing in theaters, at the last CinemaCon 2021 event, MGM Studios also released 10-minute footage. The contents are a combination of the previous trailers and some new scenes. However, unfortunately, the footage does not show the villain Lyutsifer Safin, played by Rami Malek. In fact, fans have been waiting for his appearance for a long time.

The No Time to Die footage, released at CinemaCon 2021, featured a scene of James Bond, who looked battered, in action on a motorbike. Apparently, he was avoiding the pursuit of SPECTRE agents. Bond then managed to escape, then returned to meet Madeleine Swan (Lea Seydoux). Which he suspects has reported his whereabouts to SPECTRE. Meanwhile, for Daniel Craig, No Time to Die is confirmed to be his last James Bond film. The actor who was born in Chester, March 2, 1968, first played as Bond in the film Casino Royale (2006). After that, he continued his roles in Quantum of Solace (2008), Skyfall (2012), and SPECTRE (2015). In total, Pierce Brosnan’s successor has been a member of MI6 coded 007.

In fact, initially, Daniel Craig had refused to play in No Time to Die. His remarks in 2015, when interviewed by Time Out magazine, had gone viral. At that time, Craig said he would rather slice his own wrist than play James Bond again.

However, in 2017, Daniel Craig licked his own spit. He is willing to be James Bond again and clarify what he said earlier. According to him, at that time, the interview was conducted two days after shooting the film SPECTRE. Therefore, at that moment, Craig felt very tired. Until, finally, he gave an answer that he then considered very stupid.

MGM Studios and Eon Productions, reportedly, were thrilled when Daniel Craig agreed to play James Bond again. In fact, reportedly, in 2018, they were ready to reward him with a fee of GBP 50 million! Craig deserves to be paid very dearly. Because he is a money machine. The four Bond films that he starred in previously were always in demand.

Daniel Craig’s first James Bond film, Casino Royale, earned $594 million, then his second, Quantum of Solace, $586 million. Next, there is Skyfall which earned USD 1.1 billion and SPECTRE USD 880 million. That’s all just revenue from the cinema box office. Excluding from DVD sales, streaming, and television rights.

In addition to being a money machine, Daniel Craig is also considered as a modern version of James Bond. Of course, he’s not everyone’s favourite. However, Craig is considered to have revolutionized the character of Bond. So that the audience sees it as a 21st century version of the secret agent 007. Craig’s version of Bond does look more serious, stronger, and has a deeper psychological analysis.

Daniel Craig’s superiority as James Bond has been recognized by the cast of his 007 predecessors. One of them is the late Roger Moore. According to the Bond cast in the seven films, Craig’s action is extraordinary. He has done more stunts in the first 30 seconds of his film than Moore in 14 years! Meanwhile, according to Timothy Dalton, who played Bond in three films, Craig is the best Bond.