Rumor Mill: “Team Bond” May Be Closer Than We Think
By Matthew Chernov
If it’s true that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, then James Bond might be paying a sincere compliment to Tom Cruise sometime in the near future. In a move that traditional Bond fans who ascribe to the motto “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it” probably weren’t hoping for, JBR has heard that MGM and EON Productions are currently debating whether or not to tweak the classic Bond formula to resemble something closer to the “Mission: Impossible” movies.
Whether this potential change would mean increasing the screen time and narrative importance of existing franchise characters like Moneypenny, Q, Bill Tanner, M, and Felix Leiter, or might involve creating an entirely new group of allies to assist Bond on his future adventures is still unknown at this point. Also unclear is which side of the issue EON is taking, or how close they might be to agreeing on the idea. But we’ve heard that the debate is apparently underway.
Considering the box office success and critical acclaim that “Mission: Impossible – Fallout” garnered this year, it’s easy to see why such a change would be considered. In fact, JBR devoted an entire episode this past summer to the question of what the latest “Mission: Impossible” adventure could mean for 007 in the future. Add to that a growing number of online voices calling for “Fallout” writer/director Christopher McQuarrie to helm the inevitable 26th entry in the series and it makes perfect sense why MGM and EON would at least consider the idea of moving towards a “Team Bond” approach to the series.
Expanding the roles of Bond’s core group of side characters isn’t an entirely new idea, of course. “Spectre” increased their visibility and function quite a bit, and Dynamite Entertainment released two spinoff comic books devoted entirely to Moneypenny and Felix Leiter in 2017. Still, the “Team Bond” format comes with many inherent risks. After all, anytime you tweak a formula that’s worked this successfully for more than 55 years, you open yourself up to potential disaster. Just ask the Coca-Cola Company how well New Coke worked out when they introduced it back in 1985.
Let us know how you feel about a potential “Team Bond” in the comments section below. In the meantime, we’ll follow up with further news as it develops.
article by Matthew Chernov