MOVIE NEWS – Danny Boyle says producers “just lost confidence” in the vision of Bond 25, which would have been set in present-day Russia, exploring 007’s origins.
Danny Boyle, the legendary director of Trainspotting and Slumdog Millionaire (and many others), signed on to the 25th James Bond film project in 201 8 with his longtime screenwriting partner John Hodge.
“I remember thinking, ‘Should I really get involved in franchises?’ Because they don’t really want something different,” Boyle told Esquire UK. “They want you to freshen it up a bit, but not really challenge it, and we wanted to do something different with it.”
Boyle later backed out of the film amid rumours that producer Barbara Broccoli’s company Eon Productions had not approved Boyle’s alleged plans to kill off Bond, played by Daniel Craig. But after Cary Fukunaga took over directing the film, which was eventually released in 2021, Bond met the same fate.
Boyle recently detailed what his original plot was.
“Weirdly – it would have been very topical now – it was all set in Russia, which is of course where Bond came from, out of the Cold War,” the Pistol series director explained. “It was set in present-day Russia and went back to his origins, and they just lost, what’s the word… they just lost confidence in it. It was a shame really.”
After screening No Time To Die, Danny Boyle praised screenwriter Hodge’s “wonderful” use of Bond’s idea to incorporate his child. However, Boyle sees no personal future for the franchise: “I don’t think so,” he said when asked if he would take the helm of the next instalment.
Still, Boyle has raised the possibility of casting Bond, mentioning Paapa Essiedu, who came in with the I May Destroy You series, or Robert Pattinson, noting that the actor in the latest Batman “would make a great Bond”. The producers also noted that Idris Elba, Tom Hardy, Henry Cavill and Jacob Elordi were also being considered for the role.
Mark Tildesley, Bond production designer, previously told Total Film that Danny Boyle’s rejected script was “extraordinary” and although certain plot aspects are not yet fully coherent, Boyle should be in the picture for future Bond projects.
“Unfortunately Danny’s crazy, madcap ideas didn’t quite tie up with what [producers] Barbara [Broccoli] and Michael [G. Wilson] had planned,” Tildesley said.
“It was definitely a good thing to do. Maybe another time though. I’m revving Barbara up to have another go with Danny. [He had] some extraordinary ideas, they just needed a little pulling together.”
Danny Boyle, however, has stuck by his decision not to get involved in famous franchises, telling Metro at the time that this damn production (already, his James Bond movie) was a complete turn-off for blockbusters.