Bond 25, the 25th installment in the James Bond franchise, will reportedly begin filming this week in Norway, per ScreenRant.
The still untitled film, which will be the first in the series since 2015’s Spectre(a film which grossed $880 million at the global box office), will serve as Daniel Craig’s last appearance in the titular role. Craig has played Bond in a total of four films so far, beginning in 2006 with Casino Royale.
James Bond fan site MI6-HQ reported that filming will commence this week, with a sequence in Norway, and will continue until April 2. Director Cary Fukunaga flew into Norway the past weekend ahead of the start of filming.
The film has been dogged by controversy over both its script and director. Fukunaga was hired to replace original director Danny Boyle after unconfirmed rumors swirled around disagreement regarding the casting choices for the film’s villain, ScreenRant details. The film’s script was also reportedly heavily reworked by Scott Z. Burns (writer for The Bourne Ultimatum) as late as last month.
The delays are only the latest in a series of speed bumps for the film. Originally rumored to be releasing in 2018, the first official announcement from 007.com pegged a November 8, 2019 release date in the United States. After Boyle was ousted, the release was pushed back to February 15, 2020 — and once again to April 8, 2020.
Beyond the initial filming schedule and release date, much of Bond 25 is still shrouded in mystery. The film remains untitled, and Craig remains the only cast member to be officially announced. However, that hasn’t stopped widespread speculation about the other actors involved.
After taking home an Oscar for Best Actor thanks to Bohemian Rhapsody, Rami Malek has been tied to the villain role for Bond 25. Billy Magnussen is also reportedly involved with the project, though earlier rumors about star Lupita Nyong’o playing the next Bond girl were shot down by Deadline, citing the actress’s busy schedule.
Eon Productions, the company behind the Bond films, has traditionally revealed a new film’s name, cast, and start of production in one major announcement — usually after production has already unofficially begun. Until that announcement arrives, the most pressing questions about the film will likely remain unanswered.
With the beginning of filming, Bond 25 is still tenuously on track to make the April of 2020 release. However, it remains to be seen whether or not that compressed time frame will lead to high-quality results. Spectre, for example, only began production 11 months before release, leading to what critics felt was a rushed and unmemorable film. With this being Craig’s last turn in the Bond tuxedo, hopefully Bond 25 won’t suffer the same fate.