There had been plenty of rumors and reports, but it can’t be official until it comes directly from the source. After much speculation, Daniel Craig confirmed last night on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert that he will star in the as yet untitled 25th James Bond movie, which isn’t slated to hit theaters until 2019.
Given how late shows work, just the fact that Craig was making an appearance was probably confirmation enough. Colbert asked Craig about the rumors, the strongest of which came from a New York Times report citing sources privy to briefings regarding the upcoming movie, and got a “yes.” Craig said that he had been planning to return for a few months, and was finally able to come to an agreement with Eon Productions and MGM that, we figure, involved a ton of money.
After all, it wasn’t so long ago that the prospects of Craig returning to the spy franchise appeared very dim. In a 2015 interview with TimeOut London, Craig was infamously quoted as saying he’d rather “slash my wrists” than do another Bond movie. Colbert brought that up, which Craig acknowledged was a poorly worded answer.
But, even at that time Craig had left open the possibility of a return. The interview was conducted shortly after Spectre was completed, with Craig acknowledging that he’d probably not feel like doing another Bond movie for “at least a year or two,” with the future being murkier. He did also mention in that interview that “if I did another Bond movie, it would only be for the money,” which again makes us think that the producers of Bond 25 had to loosen those purse strings all the way.
As production studios are wont to do these days, a release date has already been carved out well in advance of the start of production. The movie is expected to arrive in theaters on November 8, 2019 — these advance dates are usually made to avoid conflicts with other big budget releases. The date doesn’t conflict with Disney’s release schedule, which covers Disney, Pixar, Marvel, and Lucasfilm projects.