New Bond film is called 'Spectre', will star Christoph Waltz
It will be the 24th movie in the long-running spy franchise, and will also feature "Guardians of the Galaxy" star Dave Bautista and the Aston Martin DB10.
Luke WestawaySenior editor
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The new Bond film will be called "Spectre", the makers of the upcoming spy movie have confirmed, and will star "Inglorious Basterds" baddie Christoph Waltz, Dave Bautista as "Mr Hinx" and Monica Bellucci, alongside returning stars Daniel Craig, Naomi Harris and Ben Whishaw.
"Spectre" will be the 24th film in the hugely popular franchise, which follows the action-packed adventures of British MI6 agent James Bond, the rakish spy who over the years has been portrayed by the likes of Sean Connery, Pierce Brosnan and current star Craig. In keeping with tradition, the 24th entry is certain to feature fast cars, snappy suits, lethal gadgets and steamy romance.
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"Skyfall" director Sam Mendes, who is once more taking the helm, confirmed the new title and cast in a live event from Pinewood Studios in the UK that was streamed on YouTube.
Plot details on "Spectre" remain thin, though an official synopsis reads, "A cryptic message from Bond's past sends him on a trail to uncover a sinister organisation. While M battles political forces to keep the secret service alive, Bond peels back the layers of deceit to reveal the terrible truth behind SPECTRE."
The title suggests a return of the shadowy SPECTRE organisation, headed by Ernst Stavro Blofeld, the iconic cat-stroking Bond villain. Christoph Waltz's character is called "Oberhauser", but is it possible he's Blofeld in disguise?
We do know that Bond will be taking orders from Gareth Mallory, who assumed the role of "M" at the end of the last outing and is played by Ralph Fiennes. Andrew Scott, who plays the evil Moriarty in the BBC's "Sherlock", and Palme d'Or-winning French actress Léa Seydoux are also on board.
Mendes also showed off a car that will feature in the new film: the Aston Martin DB10. The luxurious motor is being developed specifically for the film, and production will be limited to just 10 of the bespoke cars, Aston Martin said.
Production company Eon Productions' newest flick has big shoes to fill. Its predecessor "Skyfall" is the highest-grossing Bond film so far, raking in over $1 billion in global box office sales, and is the UK's highest-grossing film of all time.
"There's always a lot of pressure to deliver when so much is at stake: not just the financial performance of the film, but also the reputation of the franchise," said Charles Gant, Film Editor at Heat Magazine. "On the other hand, most would agree that 'Quantum Of Solace' was a creative dip from 'Casino Royale', and yet the Bond brand bounced back effortlessly with 'Skyfall'."
"Having such a loyal fanbase, you can argue, makes the pressure slightly less," Gant notes. "The film would have to go spectacularly wrong to misfire commercially."
Expected to be released in the second half of next year, Spectre will have to be good to win our attention. "2015 sees an Avengers movie, a Star Wars movie and a new Bond: all will compete to be the biggest hit of the year," Gant said. "But they won't really be competing directly for audiences, as they are dated apart."
"Avengers: Age Of Ultron" is set for a late April release, while Sony says Bond is out on 6 November. "Star Wars: The Force Awakens", meanwhile, is scheduled for December.