Daniel Craig back as Bond

NEW YORK • Sound the trumpets: Daniel Craig will play James Bond in at least one more film, which will be released in November 2019.

Eon Productions, the Londonbased company that oversees all things 007, and Metro-GoldwynMayer (MGM), which holds rights to the franchise, said on Monday that the next instalment would arrive in theatres in North America on Nov 8, 2019.

That will put moviedom's most famous spy in direct competition with a live-action fairy tale from Walt Disney Studios.

Disney claimed the date last year, but has not disclosed the movie.

Eon and MGM also said the script would be written by Neal Purvis and Robert Wade, who teamed up on screenplays for the last six Bond instalments, starting with The World Is Not Enough in 1999.

The next Bond movie - the 25th in the series, if you exclude Casino Royale (1967) and Never Say Never Again (1983), which were made by other production companies - will be produced by Eon's Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli.

The companies said in a statement that details about a distribution partner, international release dates and the film's cast and director would be announced "at a later date".

But Craig's return is a done deal, said two people briefed on the matter, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to avoid conflicts with Eon and MGM.

After a gruelling shoot for the last Bond movie, Spectre (2015), the 49-year-old actor expressed a strong desire to move on from the role, which he took over with Casino Royale (2006).

"I'd rather break this glass and slash my wrists," he told a British magazine.

He later said he had been overtired during that interview and would consider returning.


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 26, 2017, with the headline 'Daniel Craig back as Bond'. Print Edition | Subscribe