Spectre was a weird James Bond movie. On the one hand, it seemed to be a farewell to Daniel Craig’s version of the character; Craig’s 007 falls in love with a woman (Leo Seydoux’s Madeleine Swann) and at the end of the film they ride off into the sunset together. Awe. On the other hand, Spectre overlaid this whole new mythology for the character, reintroducing a new version of his signature antagonist, Ernst Stavro Blofeld, and revealing him to be (SPOILERS, yo) Bond’s sort-of adopted brother, lending a personal tinge to their endless struggle. The new Blofeld, played by Christoph Waltz, even survived the film (thanks to Bond not shooting him, thanks Bond, way to go dude):

If Daniel Craig hadn’t returned for another Bond movie, things probably would have been left right there. But Craig is returning for Bond 25, which means Waltz’s Blofeld could conceivably return as well. But Waltz himself says that is not going to happen. At a recent red carpet, Waltz was asked if he would be back for the next Bond movie, and he was pretty clear about it:

His exact quote:

No... I’m really sad but that’s the tradition that there’s a new... uh enemy.

Waltz is right and wrong. The tradition recently, and for many years, is to have a new bad guy in every Bond movie. But the first Blofeld, who debuted in From Russia With Love, recurred in numerous ’60s Bond movies, including three films in a row. But, and this is important: In each movie Blofeld was played by different actors. Sometimes they explained why he looked completely different, and sometimes they didn’t even bother. So it is possible that even though Waltz might not be back, Blofeld could return anyway. But while Spectre made a lot of money, it wasn’t particularly popular with fans or critics. If the producers want to go in a slightly different direction, it would make sense to keep Blofeld out of action, at least for the next movie. Bond 25 opens in theaters in November of 2019.

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