Daniel Craig says 'secret idea' prevented him from quitting Bond after 'Spectre'

Tom Butler
·Senior Editor
James Bond (Daniel Craig) prepares to shoot in NO TIME TO DIE, a DANJAQ and Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures film. (Credit: Nicola Dove. © 2019 DANJAQ, LLC AND MGM.  ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.)
James Bond (Daniel Craig) prepares to shoot in NO TIME TO DIE, a DANJAQ and Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures film. (Credit: Nicola Dove. © 2019 DANJAQ, LLC AND MGM. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.)

Daniel Craig says unfinished business with James Bond prevented him from quitting the role after the release of Spectre in 2015.

The 51-year-old actor is returning as Ian Fleming’s super spy for the fifth and final time in 2020’s No Time To Die but, for a while, it looked like he’d had enough after his second 007 film with Sam Mendes.

When asked about making a fifth outing by Time Out in 2015, Craig infamously responded: “Now? I’d rather break this glass and slash my wrists. No, not at the moment. Not at all. That’s fine. I’m over it at the moment. We’re done. All I want to do is move on.”

Now, talking to Empire Magazine for its February 2020 issue, Craig says he had “a secret idea” for his swan song that Spectre failed to achieve.

“If [Spectre] had been [my last Bond film], the world would have carried on as normal, and I would have been absolutely fine,” he says.

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“But somehow it felt like we needed to finish something off. If I’d left it at Spectre, something at the back of my head would have been going, ‘I wish I’d done one more.’”

“I always had a kind of secret idea about the whole lot in my head, and where I wanted to take it. And Spectre wasn’t that,” he adds. “But this feels like it is.”

James Bond (Daniel Craig) in discussion with Dr. Madeleine Swann (Léa Seydoux) in NO TIME TO DIE, a DANJAQ and Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures film. (Credit: Nicola Dove © 2019 DANJAQ, LLC AND MGM.  ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.)
James Bond (Daniel Craig) in discussion with Dr. Madeleine Swann (Léa Seydoux) in NO TIME TO DIE, a DANJAQ and Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures film. (Credit: Nicola Dove © 2019 DANJAQ, LLC AND MGM. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.)

Craig’s comments suggest No Time To Die may offer closure for his incarnation of 007 which was first introduced to the world in 2006’s Casino Royale.

Craig’s tenure is the first time a Bond actor’s films have enjoyed a loose narrative connection to form a canon of sorts. Casino Royale was an origin film, while 2008’s Quantum of Solace followed Bond as he sought revenge for the death of Eva Green’s Vesper Lynd.

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2012’s Skyfall and 2015’s Spectre also shared narrative threads, including the return of the mysterious Mr White (Jesper Christensen) in Spectre. White is the father of Léa Seydoux’s Dr. Madeleine Swann, also returning in No Time To Die.

Empire’s new issue – which promises new interviews with Craig, director Cary Joji Fukunaga, producer Barbara Broccoli, and Lashana Lynch and Rami Malek – is on newsstands from Friday 27 December.

No Time To Die lands in UK cinemas on 2 April, 2020. Watch the first trailer below.