When Cary Fukunaga took over for director Danny Boyle on
The Film Previously Known As Bond 25 No Time To Die, it was unexpected news, to say the least. He’d just come down from a cerebral, crazy ride of a limited series, Maniac, and his reputation still rode high for directing the first True Detective season, which was (and let’s say this in a Woody Harrelson-Matthew McConaughey hybrid voice) totally wild, man. So I thought maybe, just maybe, we’d see a slightly more unconventional Bond installment this time around. Perhaps that was an unfair assumption, True Detective‘s twists are penned by Nic Pizzolatto, and Fukunaga wasn’t the only mind behind Maniac‘s twists (Patrick Somerville wrote much of the series), but my hunch was not entirely off base.
The Beasts of No Nation director did, in fact, attempt to make this Bond film an atypical one. He originally pitched a more cerebral take, and it sounds like kind-of a mindf*ck, honestly, even though it would have bounced off the Spectre acts of Christoph Waltz’s Blofeld. As Fukunaga tells Miranda July for Interview Magazine, he wanted the first half of the movie to take place inside 007’s head. Yes, he was completely serious:
“I swear to God, I had an idea that this movie could all be taking place inside the villain’s lair from the last film. There’s this scene [in Spectre] where a needle goes into James Bond’s head, which is supposed to make him forget everything, and then he miraculously escapes by a watch bomb. And then he and Léa blow up the place, and go on to save the day. I was like, ‘What if everything up until the end of act two is all inside his head?’”
At that point in the interview, July suggested that perhaps Fukunaga creates stories like she does, meaning that he’s attempting to work out other things in his life through his own work. In response, he admitted that “it’s so hard to separate the project from a chapter in my life,” and given that he helped write No Time To Die (after recently concluding Maniac), this all makes more sense in terms of Fukunaga wanting James Bond to be on some mind-altering substance. However, Universal/MGM obviously shut this pitch down, so we can expect No Time To Die (the last James Bond turn for Daniel Craig) to be more in the feel of the 007 pictures that we’ve come to expect. Fukunaga will probably shake up the franchise a little, sure, but we’ll have to see how much that’s possible when the movie arrives on November 25.
(Via Interview Magazine)