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Daniel Craig Will (Not) Be In Five More James Bond Films, No Matter What The Producer Says

By Rob Payne | Industry | December 20, 2011 |

By Rob Payne | Industry | December 20, 2011 |

All the way back in 2006, after the ice-cartacular debacle of Die Another Day, Casino Royale was exactly what the James Bond film franchise needed to reinvigorate a dying, bloated franchise. And in 2008, the sequel/epilogue Quantum of Solace was enough to satiate the hunger of those now salivating fans until Skyfall is released next year, if not entirely filling. I’ll go out on a small, fairly sturdy limb and say that Craig’s version of Bond is one made for the long haul. At least as long as Pierce Brosnan’s four excursions as 007. But eight total movies starring Craig as James Bond — equal to the number of Harry Potter films, one three less than the current number of Star Treks, and two more than the eventual total amount of Peter Jackson J.R.R. Tolkien adaptations — just seems outrageously optimistic, if not entirely delusional.

I would certainly be in favor of as many Craig-Bonds as can be made, but I think we’ll be lucky to get six, and maybe even have to settle at four. The arithmetic here isn’t difficult: Craig would be working steadily even without his Mi6 credentials (it’s only a matter of time before he’s just done with the character) + it takes at least two years to make a Bond movie (or four, in the case of Skyfall, meaning five more after this will take us to at least 2022 [worst-case being 2032]) = this cycle of Ian Fleming-inspired adventures reaching eight installments is always going to be a negative outcome. Or, imaginary? I was never math whiz.

Yet, despite the unambiguous results above, Bond-producer-at-large Michael G. Wilson recently said of Skyfall in an interview with British newspaper*, The People:

Filming has gone very well so far and I’d love Daniel to surpass Roger’s record and do eight pictures. Daniel’s been an absolute pleasure to be around because he takes the role so seriously. There’s really no one more passionate about making these films work than him - he’s a film maker’s dream.


The director Sam Mendes and Daniel are taking it back to a 60s feel - more Sean. I think that’s what the fans wanted. There’s a magical “Goldfinger” feel surrounding it all. It’s all very exciting. I can’t wait for people to see the movie because I think we’re making a very special Bond.
(via /Film, Emphasis mine.)

As a fan of the series, and especially the style of the early Connery films, all of that sounds fantastic. And a precedent has been set for some sort of ongoing continuity, which is something the series has never had outside of the actors who played M, Q, Moneypenny, and occasionally Felix Liter, and there are definitely legs (and abs [and pecs {and arms}]) in Craig’s Bond to carry a serialized Bond story. Something akin to Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy or the middle section of the original Trek movies, plus Undiscovered Country. So that’s something to look forward to… for this, and the next movie after this.

After that, well, it won’t be long before Michael Fassbender and Chris Hemsworth are given serious consideration for the role. Those of us who are still Clive Owen hold-outs are just going to have to let it go.**

* They still make newspapers? Weird.

** Unless he pulls a George Lazenby.

Rob Payne also writes the indie comic The Unstoppable Force, tweets on the Twitter @RobOfWar, and his ware can be purchased here (if you’re into that sort of thing). He totally wouldn’t mind if Clive Owen pulled a George Lazenby.

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