Rumor: Danny Boyle Left ‘Bond 25’ Over Clash With Daniel Craig
The James Bond franchise encountered a setback a couple of days ago when it was revealed that director Danny Boyle had exited Bond 25. Though no reason was given at the time of the official announcement, a new report may offer some insight into what exactly led to Boyle’s “creative differences” — and it may have had more to do with Daniel Craig than with the series’ producers.
That’s not to say that Boyle didn’t have issues with Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson, the producers that have steered the series for decades. Per The Telegraph, Boyle’s decision to toss out the more conventional script by Bond vets Neal Purvis and Robert Wade in favor of his own screenplay with collaborator John Hodge didn’t exactly sit well with the duo. The new script would pit Craig’s super spy against a Russian villain in a “modern-day Cold War” plot — meant to reflect the current political climate.
Craig was amenable to the storyline, but he reportedly clashed with Boyle over the casting of the main Russian villain. Boyle had his eye on Tomasz Kot, a lesser-known Polish actor who recently starred in the acclaimed period romance Cold War. Craig, who has been very vocal about his reluctance to continue playing Bond, has the final say in casting decisions — and he wasn’t down with the casting of Kot, though it’s unclear exactly why he took issue with the actor.
It’s possible that Kot, who would be following in the footsteps of recent Bond villains like Christoph Waltz and Javier Bardem, wasn’t quite famous enough for Craig’s tastes. It’s also possible that The Telegraph’s report isn’t entirely accurate; British outlets tend to be more liberal when it comes to publishing rumors and tabloid fodder.
Bond 25 was set to begin production at the end of the year for an October 2019 release, but depending on how long it takes Wilson and Broccoli to find a replacement for Boyle, that date could be pushed back to sometime in 2020 — five years after the release of the last Bond film, Spectre. Fans have their own ideas for who could take over for Boyle, including Christopher Nolan, whose name is frequently dropped despite the fact that he has no interest in directing a Bond film.
Other suggestions include Christopher McQuarrie, who just delivered two Mission: Impossible films back-to-back and expressed his reluctance to make it three, and Jaume Collet-Serra. Again, these are merely suggestions that we’ve seen floating around social media; it’s ultimately up to Wilson and Broccoli, whose tastes tend toward the conventional.