With the rumour mill swirling ahead of Amazon’s takeover of MGM, EON Productions has shot down the idea of James Bond on the small screen.
The twin powerhouses behind the 007 franchise, Barbara Broccoli and Michael J Wilson, have flatly denied that the James Bond franchise will be heading to the small screen during their stewardship of the character, despite any advances that Amazon may make when its eventual takeover of MGM is completed.
Although MGM owns the rights to the James Bond franchise, EON Productions, headed by Broccoli and Wilson, retain artistic control over the films. It means that in theory, even the all-powerful Amazon shouldn’t be able to determine if Bond’s fate ultimately lies on the small screen, a direction that many other major film franchises have gone down of late.
“We make films. We make films for the cinema. That’s what we do,” Broccoli has said to Total Film (via Collider). Wilson also added, “We’ve resisted that call for 60 years.”
Amazon is a powerful force to reckon with though, and the limits of EON’s control over the franchise will surely be tested as Amazon look to bring more numbers to its streaming platform, as rivals Apple, Netflix and Disney continue to spend big and accrue new intellectual property.
John Logan, who has written Skyfall and Spectre, was somewhat unimpressed regarding the news of Amazon’s takeover of MGM when it was first announced, telling the New York Times “what happens if a bruising corporation like Amazon begins to demand a voice in the process? What happens to the comradeship and quality control if there’s an Amazonian overlord with analytics parsing every decision? What happens when focus groups report they don’t like Bond drinking martinis? Or killing quite so many people? And that English accent’s a bit alienating, so could we have more Americans in the story for marketability?”
What ultimately happens to Bond very much remains to be seen, but EON, it seems, will be fighting tooth and nail to keep the character as a cinematic institution.
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