There’s been a new trend in Hollywood recently where a studio will withhold the title of an exciting upcoming blockbuster until just a couple of months before their release. Star Wars: Episode IX was only officially named The Rise of Skywalker a couple of months ago and Avengers 4 wasn’t called Endgame until the first trailer hit last December. The latest such movie is Bond 25, which is set to finally hit theaters next February, a full five years after Spectre was released, under the title No Time to Die. In that half-decade of radio silence, many Bond fans suggested their own ideas for the title of the 25th movie.
Here are five Bond 25 title suggestions that were better than No Time To Die, along with five that were worse.
10 Better: All the Time in the World
This one suits the plot of a retired Bond being reluctantly pulled back into the field. It’s also a good name for a finale and this new Bond movie is set to be Daniel Craig’s final time playing 007. Usually, a “finale” isn’t necessary in the Bond franchise, since each movie stands on its own, but since Spectre insisted on tying Craig’s movies together in a long-running and supposedly cohesive narrative, a finale is necessary for this run of Bond movies.
All the Time in the World sounds more like a send-off than No Time to Die, and for that reason, it would make a better title for Daniel Craig’s last movie in the role of 007.
9 Worse: 007
This one was suggested by a fan on Reddit based on the fact that the final Wolverine movie (at least in Hugh Jackman’s series) was called Logan and the sixth Die Hard movie is rumored to be called McClane.
But the Bond franchise’s titles have never followed trends (Casino Royale very almost did with the working title Bond Begins borrowed from Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins, but the producers wisely decided to change it) – they’ve always followed their own style. 007 isn’t a very Bond-y title. Ian Fleming would never have named one of his novels 007; at least No Time to Die sounds like a James Bond title.
8 Better: License Renewed
Bond fans didn’t want the new movie to follow the “edgy” trend that Daniel Craig’s movies have been following for the past couple with slick one-word titles, but then a superfluous title like No Time to Die seems like it’s pandering to fans and yearning for an era of Bond movies that’s simply over. License Renewed seems like a nice middle ground. It’s short and sweet, like Craig’s latest movies’ titles, and it’s not long and pontificating in a desperate attempt to sound like an Ian Fleming title.
But it does sound cool and it does allude to the Bond mythology, almost hinting at a reboot that will start fresh. As Craig’s last movie, this won’t be a fresh start, but it should strive to be a refreshing change after the disappointment of Spectre.
7 Worse: Risico
Bond fans have been waiting for the 007 producers to use this as-yet-unused Ian Fleming title for a while, but it’s hard to see why fans are pushing so hard for it. It doesn’t sound particularly riveting – or, worse yet, particularly Bond-y – and it only applies to a certain story that the movie almost definitely isn’t adapting. It would fit in with the one-word trend set by Skyfall and Spectre, but the word isn’t as captivating or mysterious as those words.
Fans spent months trying to figure out what Skyfall meant. It actually turned out to be quite a disappointing answer – it was Bond’s childhood home in Scotland – but either way, the title inspired intrigue in the fans in a way that Risico simply wouldn’t.
6 Better: The Spy That Never Sleeps
When we catch up with Bond in his 25th big-screen outing, he’ll be retired and living in Jamaica before being pulled back into action. The title The Spy That Never Sleeps would suit this premise perfectly. He tried to retire – in other words, rest, and “sleep” whenever he wanted – but it didn’t take and he was brought back in for another mission, proving that he really is the spy that never sleeps.
The Spy That Never Sleeps might sound a little more like a John le Carré novel than an Ian Fleming novel, but Fleming still used “The Spy...” titling formula for The Spy Who Loved Me.
5 Worse: Property of a Lady
Based on a number of factors – the movie’s Valentine’s Day release date, Daniel Craig’s character arc leading him to settle down into marriage, Eon’s promise that Bond 25 will address the #MeToo movement – some fans proposed Property of a Lady as a title.
Property of a Lady is one of the few titles from Ian Fleming’s original James Bond stories that the movies have yet to use (the movies have rarely adapted the actual storylines; they usually just take a title and come up with their own plot), so it makes sense. But it’s just not as exciting a title as No Time to Die.
4 Better: Carte Blanche
This title is taken from a non-Fleming Bond novel. No one was ever expecting the movie to take the plot of the novel, but there’s an elegance to the title that fans like. It’s suave, it’s sophisticated, and it’s relevant to the world of espionage.
Ever since the James Bond movies started connecting with audiences and inspiring filmmakers, there have been dozens of pale imitations, each with their own shallow attempt to replicate a Bond-style title. Frankly, No Time to Die sounds like one of these rip-offs. Carte Blanche doesn’t – it has all the qualities of a great Bond title.
3 Worse: The Death Collector
A couple of fans suggested this title, which is likely a pun based on the term “debt collector,” but it’s a stretch, it doesn’t really make sense, and it’s not a very good title. Words like “die” and “kill” are often included in Bond titles, but as verbs, these are more dynamic. “Death” just sounds grim.
We don’t want to focus too much on the human lives that Bond ends in these movies, because it’s not fun. The Death Collector sounds more like a slasher movie or a grisly crime thriller about the hunt for a serial killer than a globe-trotting, action-packed spy adventure.
2 Better: For Queen and Country
This one sounds like a real James Bond title from the Sean Connery/Roger Moore era (i.e. the era of classic Bond) in a way that none of the other Bond 25 title suggestions – and most of Daniel Craig’s existing Bond films – have failed to do. But it’s not so old-fashioned that it would feel out of place in today’s moviegoing landscape.
It would make a good title for Craig’s final Bond movie, because as the finale, it’ll need to wrap up his character arc and give him a send-off. Naming the movie after the reason that Bond travels the world and risks his life and takes down megalomaniacal villains would’ve been a good jumping-off point for that.
1 Worse: Shatterhand
This one was rumored to be the real title, or at least the working title, before those rumors are swiftly shut down by the Bond producers. Shatterhand is taken from Dr. Guntram Shatterhand, one of the many aliases used over the years by Blofeld. It would follow in the footsteps of the last couple of titles, Skyfall and Spectre – one-word titles beginning with “S” – but neither of those are classic Bond titles.
A classic Bond title is a zippy turn of phrase, usually containing the word “die,” so it was about time for the single-word “S” title trend to be broken and what better way to break it than with a phrase containing the word “die?”