The scrapped James Bond 25 title has reportedly been revealed. Though we know that the latest entry into the 007 canon is due to hit theaters in 2020, so far fans have had to stick with the generic working title of Bond 25 when discussing the upcoming film.
For Bond fans, it’s arguable that three major components exist for each and every new release in the now 57 year old franchise. First and foremost, of course, it’s who is going to play James Bond. This bit of information has long been known to be Daniel Craig, but there was a substantial period of time prior to production of Bond 25 where exactly who would portray the suave super spy was completely up in the air. Next in importance is the new film’s title - a crucial element to maintaining the feel of the franchise; and lastly, there’s the opening song and which artist will perform it. So far, the last two elements are still missing, but some new information just might give fans insight into the direction that MGM and Universal are going.
As revealed by James Bond fansite MI6, the title for Bond 25 was previously planned to be A Reason to Die. While earlier rumors falsely led fans to believe that working titles for the new film have ranged from Shatterhand to Eclipse, this time the working title of A Reason to Die seems to have some credibility. The title was apparently being considered right up to the new film’s official media launch at Bond author Ian Fleming’s Goldeneye estate in Jamaica. Ultimately, A Reason to Die was deemed weak and “not Bond enough” by the film’s producer’s and studio partners.
It’s entirely subjective as to whether A Reason to Die is “Bond enough,” of course, but the scrapped title doesn't feel as on-brand with the current Daniel Craig era of Bond. Previous Bond titles since Craig took over the role have avoided the often-used words “die” and “live,” and this doesn’t seem to be an accident. Craig’s appointment to the 007 role was a big turning point for the franchise, as it was working to escape the somewhat dated persona that it had previously taken on. As Bond was re-introduced to audiences with 2006’s Casino Royale, Craig’s involvement made everything seem more of its time, with an added depth that previous entries in the canon didn’t have or offer.
It will certainly be exciting to learn what this latest installment in the spy franchise will call itself, but just when that might happen is anyone’s guess. And, while Bond fans have got to be some of the most patient franchise fans out there, it’s no exaggeration to say that choosing the right title is every bit as essential to the success of Bond 25 as its theme song, villain, and story.
- James Bond 25 (2020) release date: Apr 08, 2020