Here’s our December 29, 2020 edition of Spy Movie News with MGM maybe looking for a sale, No Time to Die title song, James Bond comic, Mission: Impossible spaced-out?, The Tom Cruise rant, Jet-Pack man on video, Tenet, The Gray Man, Black Widow,, The King’s Man, The Survivalist, Red Notice and a couple of memorials. Let’s go!
We have this article available as a podcast if you would rather listen to it than read it. You’ll find that here.
The Wall Street Journal reported on December 21,2020 that MGM Holdings Inc. is looking into a sale thinking that its library of content might prove to be an attractive offering for other companies looking to expand their streaming service. Big tech companies, the article says, are logical targets for buying the company.
LATimes.com reports that Apple and Amazon had been previously pegged as potential suitors, but that has apparently passed.
Our opinion: no one knows what this means yet – if there will be a sale, if there are interested buyers, if MGM Holdings Inc will sell the whole company or streaming rights to all or some of their vast library of content. And what this means to us Bond fans, waiting for No Time To Die. MGM is a closely held company, meaning there are limited number of shareholders and is privately held. And how does DANJAQ (the Eon Productions company) play into this decision? Our only concern is this: Please don’t sell it to Disney, or we may never see James Bond as James Bond again! This might get complicated!
What is the impact of the WarnerMedia announcement on all of this?
In a related article, complicating things even more, FilmStories.co.uk released an article December 7 2020, by Simon Brew, suggesting that things are even more complicated when it comes to No Time To Die potential streaming or MGM sale. The WarnerMedia announcement, which we covered in our December 8, 2020 Spy Move News, said they are releasing their content in theaters and through streaming services. So, this puts pressure on other studios.
But, we just talked about MGM’s possible sale, and this article points out how complicated this can get. More than one studio is involved here: the article says in the US, the film will be released by MGM/United Artists Releasing, while outside of America it’s a Universal release.
MGM/United Artists and Universal don’t necessarily think alike: they have different approaches and so there must be consensus. And of course, we have Eon Productions that must be happy about any plan.
And we have the overwhelming feeling from the powers that be that No Time to Die is a big screen event. And a lot of the big screen theater release stuff is coming from Eon Productions – remember a streaming deal fell apart a few months ago.
So, consensus is always a difficult task and here we have. That agreement also has to satisfy the James Bond overlords, Eon Productions too.
But also, there’s an arguably even bigger discussion: because much like TENET last summer, No Time To Die is seen as absolutely a cinema film.
Speaking of No Time To Die, in a CinemaBlend.com article December 22 2020, called “No Time To Die Singer Billie Eilish Describes ‘Rough’ Reaction To Her Theme Song,” Billie Eilish talks about how rough it was when the title song she wrote with her brother was released.
She said that the theme was not well-received by Bond fan traditionalists, but she hinted that people kept an open mind about it.
Our opinion: We kept an open mind about it, and so we think Billie is right. At first, we did not like the title/theme some very much. But after many listens, it grew on us and now we think it is a fitting piece for the new (well kinda new) film, No Time To Die. What do you think? We did a podcast analyzing the lyrics of Billie Eilish’s song that you can listen to here. – or through your favorite podcast app where you can subscribe to our show, Cracking the Code of Spy Movies.
You can read the full article at CinemaBlend.com.
According to an article on Hollywoodreporter.com, Dynamite Entertainment will debut its newest comic entitled James Bond: Agent of SPECTRE in March, 2021. You can read more about this here on HollywoodReporter.com.
Who is this guy in the picture from Dr. No?
An article on The Spy Command talks about the “controversy” as to who the third person in a lobby card photo is. Ursula Andress and Sean Connery are easy to identify but the third person has caused a bit of a stir. This conversation started on our own SpyMovieNavigator Facebook page. The Spy Command shows some pictures identifying the third person as Jack Lord. You can read about it here on The Spy Command’s post.
We’ve previously reported on the sightings in Los Angeles area of a person flying in a jet pack (we remember the jetpack / rocket belt from Thunderball. We’ll he’s back and this time there is video footage on thedrive.com. It is hard to tell from the video if the object is a person in a jetpack or a drone, but it’s compelling video nonetheless. You can read the article and see the video here on thedrive.com.
MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 7
In a FoxNews.Com article by Jessica Napoli, entitled: “Tom Cruise’s ‘Mission: Impossible 7’ crew is ‘walking on eggshells’ after his rant: report”
Well, we have heard by now that Tom Cruise pretty much yelled at the crew for violating Covid safety protocols while filming Mission: Impossible.
The article reports this has put the crew on edge, threatening them that if he sees it again, they are gone.
Cruise warned them that they are not going to shut this movie down.
Our opinion: the rant was real using a lot of f-bombs, but we have to remember that Cruise spent between $500,000 – $600,000 renting cruise ships to house the crew and actors while filming in Norway – to keep them safe and top keep production going. So, he was miffed. Anyway, we think it is amazing they have accomplished what they have filming in the UK, Norway, Italy all during this pandemic.
See this article on FoxNews.com for the full story.
Complex.com reported on December 17, 2020, that 5 crew members quit after the Tom Cruise rant. They quote The Sun as a source. Who knows!
From MI to Porn?
According to an article on movieweb.com, the five crew members who walked off of Mission: Impossible 7 after Cruise’s rant have been offered a job with an adult entertainment camming website. The article does not say if any of them accepted the offer.
We in our December 8th Spy Movie News, that Tom Cruise is trying to film on the international space station. We’ve speculated this was for Mission: Impossible 8, but that’s just our speculation. Now it turns out he has competition. According to an article on CinemaBlend.com, Russian Channel One TV is trying to shoot a movie at the space station in October 2021. This would be in direct conflict with when Cruise wants to film there. This could get interesting. You can read about it here on Cinemablend.com.
As we reported in a previous Spy Movie News, Red Notice wrapped up filming in November, due to some very strict Covd-19 safety protocols. An article at CinemaBlend.com details the safety bubble concept that they used for the cast and crew, as Netflix, who has a heavy investment in the movie, was one of the first resume production during the pandemic.
There is no solid release date that we can confirm other than probably mid to late 2021. You can read the article here on CinemaBlend.com
Black Widow is still on schedule to be released May 7, 2021.
The King’s Man is still holding for the moment at a March 12 2021 release. This is the pre-quell to the two Kingsmen movies out already, Kingsman: The Secret Service (2014) Kingsman: The Golden Circle (2017).
According to an article in The Hollywood Reporter, Johnathan Rhys Meyers and John Malkovich will star in the pandemic-inspired thriller called The Survivalist. “The movie follows a former FBI agent who is must protect a young woman immune to the disease from a dangerous gang leader hunting her.” According to the article, production has wrapped, but we’ve been unable to find anything about a release date/platform. The Survivalist wraps production. You can read about this on HollywoodReporter.com.
Variety.com has an article that talks about how the wardrobe used in TENET reflects the character’s personalities. We don’t find too many articles with costume designers and there is a five-minute discussion with Jeffrey Kurland, the movie’s costume designer which gives a nice look at how costumes help tell the story. You can find the article here on Variety.com.
According to an article on deadline.com, the Ryan Gosling and Chris Evans espionage thriller, The Gray Man, has had its production paused for a couple of weeks due to Covid concerns. This is a big-budget movie based on a bestselling book series by 2009 Mark Greaney. The article states “The Intention here is to create a new franchise with a James Bond level of scale and budget.” You can read the article here on Deadline.com:
We’re sad to report that two legends in the spy movie world have died since our last Spy Movie News:
- On December 12, 2020 we lost John le Carré, the writer of the novels behind a host of spy-stories. His novels were responsible for the George Smiley movies, The Russia House, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, The Tailor of Panama, The Little Drummer Girl, and others. You can read more in this article on reuters.com.
- On December 18, 2020 we also lost Peter Lamont. He was the production designer or art director on 18 James Bond movies from Goldfinger through the 2006 Casino Royale. He won an Academy Award for his work on Titanic and was nominated for his work on The Spy Who Loved Me, Fiddler on the Roof, and Aliens. You can read more in this Hollywood Reporter Article.
That wraps up our Spy Movie News for December 29 2020. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter (@SpyNavigator) and InstaGram too! Subscribe right now to our Cracking the Code of Spy Movies show on your favorite podcast app! Thanks for listening – we appreciate it!