Our favorite spy is back in action. Sony Pictures Entertainment recently announced that Daniel Craig is returning as James Bond in Spectre, set to release in late 2015. Previous cast members Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris, Ben Wishaw and Rory Kinnear are also returning for the next film. Joining the cast for the first time are Christoph Waltz, Léa Seydoux, Dave Bautista, Monica Bellucci and Andrew Scott. Skyfall director Sam Mendes returns to the franchise to direct the 24th film adaptation of the popular Ian Fleming novels.
At the moment, we have only a general outline of the plot for Spectre. James Bond is on a mission to uncover the truth behind global terrorist group SPECTRE while M struggles to keep the MI-6 agency alive. However, we may find out more specific plot details in the coming weeks, as the Spectre screenplay was one of the documents stolen in the recent hack of Sony Pictures Entertainment. While Bond fans everywhere may be itching to hear more information, we can only hope that the screenplay does not surface. In another bizarre case of bad luck, several of the production’s luxury vehicles were stolen in Germany last week. Thankfully, the Aston Martin DB10, designed exclusively for Spectre, was not among the purloined vehicles.
Scandals aside, there are plenty of reasons to be excited about the new installment in the Bond film series. Composer Thomas Newman returns after winning his third Grammy for his work on Skyfall. Newman (Wall-E, Savings Mr. Banks) has been nominated a whopping 12 times for an Academy Award and Spectre could be the perfect opportunity to finally take home the Oscar. The upcoming Bond film’s screenwriter John Logan has brought us cinema gems like Hugo (2011), The Aviator (2004) and of course, Skyfall. His screenplay will be polished up by five-time Bond film writing duo Neal Purvis and Robert Wade.
Adding to the already stacked cast are some incredibly talented performers. Austrian actor Christoph Waltz burst onto the American cinema scene in Quentin Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds (2009) and we’ve been captivated by his performances ever since. Waltz, who co-stars alongside Amy Adams in the Tim Burton flick Big Eyes, has proven that he can play an excellent villain. However Waltz has been fairly cryptic about his role in Spectre, only confirming that his character’s name is Franz Oberhauser in an interview with Screen Crush. While the Internet has been buzzing with rumors that Waltz will be playing super villain Ernst Stavro Blofeld, it looks like we’ll have to wait to see whether or not Blofeld makes use of Oberhauser as a pseudonym.
Waltz isn’t the only intriguing casting choice for the latest Bond film. Léa Seydoux made history last year when she and her co-star Adéle Exarchopolous were awarded the Palm d’Or alongside director Abdellatif Kechiche for their extraordinary performances in Blue is the Warmest Color. It’s surprising that it has taken this long for Italian beauty Monica Bellucci to make an appearance as a Bond girl, but at age 50, the internationally recognized fashion model and actress still looks better than most 20-year-olds. Dave Bautista nailed his performance as Drax in Guardians of the Galaxy and hopefully his role in Spectre will solidify yet another successful wrestling to acting transition. Sherlock fans will be happy to see Andrew Scott on the list of actors joining the project. Given his terrifying performance as Jim Moriarty in the BBC series, it is safe to assume that Scott will be playing a Bond villain. It is possible that Scott could actually be playing Blofeld and Waltz is lending his skills to play an entirely new Bond bad guy. Whatever his role is, Scott rounds off a stellar group of actors attached to the latest installment in the James Bond series.
International affinity for Agent 007 has lasted for more than 60 years and shows no signs of waning. Skyfall earned more than $1.1 billion worldwide and captured two wins at the 85th Academy Awards. Acclaimed director Sam Mendes and Daniel Craig are a winning combination that give the longest running franchise of all time a sleek new look and ensure that the Bond series will continue on for years to come.
Spectre hits theaters worldwide on November 6th, 2015.