James Bond Fans Get Handy Tweeting About Working Title for Daniel Craig’s Final Bond Flick
James Bond will return in … Shatterhand?
That’s the reported working title of the 25th Bond film, according to the trade publication Production Weekly, which lists movies currently shooting or in development. The film will once again be headlined by Daniel Craig, who has starred in several high-grossing Bond films, including 2012’s Skyfall, which made more than a billion dollars worldwide—making it the most lucrative Bond entry since the franchise began in the early 1960s.
The success of the series means that any new info is instantly seized upon by fans (some of whom had choice one-liners about the prospective title).
And while Shatterhand is, for now, only a temporary name, the strange moniker does have a connection to the famous British secret agent: In the 1964 novel You Only Live Twice, written by Bond creator Ian Fleming, “Shatterhand” is a moniker used by Bond adversary Ernst Blofeld. That character was last seen in 2015’s Spectre, in which he was portrayed by actor Christoph Waltz.
That doesn’t mean Blofeld will make an appearance in the next film (Waltz is not part of the small cast list that’s been announced). And there’s a good chance the title will undergo some tweaking before next April. As some Bond-lovers noted, Shatterhand has been used as a placeholder title for Bond films off and on for more than twenty years.
Shatterhand—or whatever Bond 25 winds up calling itself—is set to be released in April 2020, and will be directed by Cary Joji Fukunaga, whose work includes the first season of True Detective and last year’s Netflix series Maniac. It will be the fifth and likely final outing as Bond for the 50-year-old Craig, who at one point said he’d rather “slit [his] wrists” than play the character again.
Craig’s decision to hang on for one more film was likely a relief for the executives investing heavily in the Bond brand. In 2017, five studios vied for the rights to distribute Bond 25, after a long-time deal with Sony ended. The movie will be distributed in the U.S. via a joint venture between MGM and Annapurna, the Oscar-winning film company owned by Megan Ellison, and worldwide by Universal Pictures.
If the movie retains the Shatterhand moniker, it will join a proud lineage of ridiculous one-word Bond titles, including Octopussy and Thunderball.