There are just some things that even James Bond can’t fight back.
In the cover story for GQ‘s April Issue, Daniel Craig revealed that the No Time to Die team tried but were unsuccessful at keeping out current political happenings — including President Donald Trump — from their latest Bond movie.
“We struggled to keep Trump out of this film,” the 52-year-old actor admitted. “But of course it is there. It’s always there, whether it’s Trump, or whether it’s Brexit, or whether it’s Russian influence on elections or whatever.”
In keeping with the rest of the secrecy around the film, Craig didn’t offer up any further information on how Trump may be referenced.
Prior to his joining of the franchise, the Bond films had always existed as standalone entities. But all that changed when Craig made his debut as Bond with 2006’s Casino Royale, producers instead deciding to create a loosely serialized story across multiple films in which the outside world heavily influences the film’s storylines. (Skyfall and Spectre were inspired by Julian Assange and the Edward Snowden NSA disclosures, GQ notes).
Noam Galai/FilmMagic; Michael Brochstein/Echoes Wire/Barcroft Media/Getty Daniel Craig and Donald Trump
“It felt right that it was Daniel,” Skyfall and Spectre director Sam Mendes told GQ of the franchise’s new direction. “He seemed like a contemporary Bond and like a realist, like a person who actually walked on the street.”
Lachlan Bailey for GQ Daniel Craig
Craig himself is politically active, having reportedly donating more than $47,000 to Sen. Bernie Sanders in 2015, GQ reported.
He spoke out to the magazine about his opposition to Brexit. “There are British people working in the top industries in the world and at the top of those industries. We do that, and we are good at that. And somehow we’re kind of breaking all that apart,” he said. “Whether that’s breaking from Europe.… There is a sort of nihilism, isn’t there?”
The British star, who lives in New York City with wife Rachel Weisz, went on to compare the character of James Bond to real-life leaders like Trump and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
“There’s something I feel that Bond represents, someone who’s there, trying to do the job and doesn’t want any f—ing publicity,” Craig said. “And this is a joke, because he drives a f—ing Aston Martin and does all these ridiculous things. But these people exist.… It’s the ambulance service. I know it’s terribly kind of romantic. But they are people who are just getting on with it and saving people’s lives.”
“But that’s not the way the world works now,” he added. “It’s about humiliating others to save one’s own skin. And it’s cowardly, it’s just f—ing cowardly.”
Nicola Dove/MGM Daniel Craig
No Time To Die is Craig’s fifth and final time suiting up as the 007 agent.
“Looking back at what we’ve done, it’s been incredibly emotional because it’s massive,” Craig said earlier this month, before a screening of Casino Royale at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City. “I knew we had a good movie when we were making it but I sort of squared away with myself; that if it was a swing and a miss, it was a swing and a miss.”
Taking on the part was an opportunity for Craig to redefine the character on the big screen.
“I was given this chance to start again,” Craig shared. “We know that the world needs saving in the beginning of a Bond movie and we’re pretty sure that the world is going to get saved at the end a Bond movie. So what happens in-between? Is there a moment where we’re in doubt of this man? In doubt of his character? In doubt of his safety? In doubt of his personal life? Any of these things. If you can load the movie up with those things, then maybe the movie would elevate and become something that’s a bit more emotional and a bit more connectable.”
Sadly, fans will have to wait a little longer to see Craig’s last turn as Bond. No Time to Die was originally scheduled to be released in April but has been pushed back due to coronavirus concerns. It will now be released in November 2020 and marks the first Hollywood film to shift its global rollout because of the outbreak.