Bond 22 script crisis

Earlier this month MI6 reported that Roger Michell had spoken a little more about his reason for not pursuing Bond 22.

“We couldn’t find a way of making us all happy with the script. It’s been through various drafts, but I just decided to say no before I got too far into it”, he reportedly said.

Although the filmmakers have been given an extra year to kick the script into shape as filming is now planned to commence in January 2008 rather than this year, this news is worrying. Casino Royale has upped the expectations of most Bond fans, but the lack of a decent script for Bond 22 shows that without original material from Ian Fleming to work with scriptwriters Purvis and Wade are lost.

So, it’s time for EON to part ways with this pair, as other than Casino Royale their Bond scripts have just never been good enough. Remember also that Casino Royale’s script had a final polish from Paul Haggis, so if the resulting Bond 22 script features a sub-standard plot with clunky dialogue then we don’t have much to look forward to, despite Daniel Craig’s determination to have his say in the whole filmmaking process.

But who to choose to replace them? Not co-producer Michael G Wilson, that’s for sure – if you look at his involvement in scriptwriting you’ll notice that he helped to write the worst Bond films.

Instead, why not spend a little more of Sony’s hard-earned cash and hire a real scriptwriter who can come up with a convincing plot and believeable dialogue and build upon the success of Casino Royale rather than letting it all slip away again.

Any suggestions?

David Leigh founded The James Bond Dossier in 2002. A fan of 007 since the age of 8, he is also author of The Complete Guide to the Drinks of James Bond. You can order a copy here if you don't own it already.

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13 Responses to “Bond 22 script crisis”

  • Rosie Powell

    Michael G. Wilson helped write the worst Bond films? Are you kidding me? His worst effort was probably, “A VIEW TO A KILL”.

    Wilson also co-wrote “FOR YOUR EYES ONLY”, “OCTOPUSSY”, “THE LIVING DAYLIGHTS” and “LICENSE TO KILL”. And you consider these movies the worst Bond movies?

    Remind me to never take your criticism seriously.

  • M

    For Your Eyes Only is probably the best Roger Moore film (which doesn’t really say very much) and The Living Daylights is ok, but would have been much better without some of the dafter moments; Octopussy, A View To A Kill and Licence to Kill are the three worst Bond films by far, so we stand by what we say.

    You obviously have a different opinion – that’s ok, but it would be nice if you extended the same courtesy towards us.

  • Anthony D.

    I think they will figure it out. They should bring back S.P.E.C.T.R.E and show how it started… maybe ahow younger versions of characters from old films

  • Anthony D.

    Also, I would like to have something like Le Chiffre has a brother that starts Spectre and later claims revenge on bond!!!!!

  • Tipster

    They should seriously hire Paul Haggis to write the screenplay, he is probably the best screen writer out there right now, three screen writing Oscar nominations in three years, are you kidding me? Also they brought him in the polish Casino Royale into a beautiful Gem of a movie, I sure he could given the right kind of Freedom write a killer Bond film, and maybe Direct it too.

    Remember it took a Canadian to re-invent Bond; they should use a Canadian to bring Bond to a new level.

  • Hilary h.

    Casino Royale answered a lot of questions, while still keeping James Bond a mysterious man. Daniel Craig was very fitting for the part. I actually couldn’t believe I ever said this, but he could re-do all of the Bond movies and I would be happy. The actor, writers, and directors did an excellent job defining Bond. I would suggest showing how S.P.E.C.T.R.E. gets it start, and stick with Flemming novels. A modern day Dr. No would help create a whole new genre of Bond fans. Go with what you know. Last comment- I particularly liked the lack of too much cheesiness– all of the lines were very flowing, not just funny ha-ha but funny with a smirk.

  • lee

    Reading everyones comments I have to agree with the idea of looking back to go forward, Dr No, Scaramanger even Gold finger could all be re-writen to fit in to a modern bond film. Theres always room for more villains but these are sooo bad and could be badder! When you think bond could now beat the living be-jesus out of jason bourne, bringing back these vilains with a modern twist would be something worth waiting for and not all that hard to write about either. Ill do it!!

  • Andrew Miller

    I think some of the sript problems lie in the fact that:
    1 These films must be dumbed-down so they can be appreciated in their many translations
    2 There is the usual blockbuster script-by-focus-group
    3 There is so much baggage inherent in the franchise

    I’d like to see a Bond period piece, set in the ’50s or ’60s done by people from left-field like the Coen brothers or Darren Arenofsky or Alan Ball or Tom Tykwer….That could really shake things up.

  • Michael Graham

    I am currently writing and artcile on the application of the principles of brand rejuvenation to the bond franchise. Who would like a copy. It will be technical I have also read all the books, seen and own all the film and read John Pearson’s book plus the Intrepid histories more than once. Perhaps there is a brand disipline at a time when the JB space a s a superspy is crowded? (Jason Bourne, Jack Bauer and the original James Bond)


  • Tom R

    I think Hilary h. (4/9/07) hit it right on the head. I too would like to see the whole series of Bond films redone with Daniel Craig. Looking back, as everyone knows, there have been some awful Bond movies …. thus leaving lots of room for improvement.

    To me, the further we move away from Fleming’s books, the worse are the results. Let’s face it folks, there is only ONE Ian Fleming!!

  • M

    Thanks for your comments Tom.

    “To me, the further we move away from Fleming’s books, the worse are the results. Let’s face it folks, there is only ONE Ian Fleming!!”

    That’s right on the money and something that worries me when we come to Bond 22.


    How about hiring Nick Sagan, son of the late Carl Sagan, to write it? He is an accomplished screenwriter and is an amazing storyteller, just like his father! If one were to read the Idlewild trilogy, one would recognize this fact. 007

  • Jackie Barratt

    Just flicking through and had to add the comments that I too think D.C. would do a magnificent job of re-doing all the old bond movies – it would be fantastic!