Daniel Craig will shoot Bond 25 before beginning work on Showtime's Purity series, says the network's president and CEO David Nevins. Though Craig is still not officially confirmed to be returning as James Bond, it is considered a lock that the actor will play 007 for a fifth time in the 25th Bond film, which is set for release in 2019.
It was first reported in 2016 that Craig would be taking on a role in Showtime's Purity, a series based on Jonathan Franzen’s novel. Craig is set to play Andreas Wolf in that project, a character described as a Julian Assange-like hacktivst who is crusading for radical transparency. David Nevins said that the plan is for Purity to stretch over two ten-episode seasons with Craig appearing in the bulk of the 20 episodes.
At this year's Television Critics Association press tour, David Nevins revealed that Craig will shoot Bond 25 before going to work on Purity, a situation that could possibly delay the beginning of shooting on the Showtime series until 2019 (via Slashfilm). Nevins said:
“He’s doing Bond first. I can’t say anything about what I know or don’t know about Bond. That’s not my area.”
Nevins says he expects Purity to shoot internationally, though the majority of the action would still take place in the United State. Todd Field (Little Children) has been tapped to direct all 20 episodes and will also co-write along with Jonathan Franzen and David Hare. The story centers around a young woman named Pip who leaves her dissatisfying life to move to South American and join Andreas Wolf's underground hacker group The Sunshine Project. Craig's character is the only one who thus far has been cast.
It was something of a huge deal for Purity to land an actor of Daniel Craig's stature in a major role, and with Craig as the show's major selling point for general audiences not familiar with Jonathan Franzen's work, the production has little choice but to wait for the star. It sounds like Purity will be a semi-large production that will shoot in at least a few international locations, so it's not something that could be rushed into motion quickly ahead of Craig's work on Bond 25.
Details about Bond 25 are still entirely under wraps, but there have been some interesting rumors about the film, including an alleged title and speculation about the villain being blind. Producers still have not named a director to take on the project, but it was recently reported that Denis Villeneuve, David MacKenzie and relative unknown Yann Demange are among the front-runners to win the gig. Christopher Nolan continues to be asked about his interest in tackling Bond but recently said he would only do the job if the series were in dire straits and needed reinvention.
- James Bond 25 (2019) release date: Feb 14, 2020