Skip navigation

Tag Archives: James Bond

No Time to Die will be the 25th film in the franchise and Daniel Craigs final role as 007

Former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr will join composer Hans Zimmer to score the upcoming James Bond movie No Time to Die.

Zimmer, widely celebrated for his scores for films such as Gladiator, The Da Vinci Code and the Pirates of the Caribbean series, was drafted in as a last-minute replacement earlier this month.

No Time to Die, which is the 25th James Bond film in the franchise and Daniel Craigs final fling in the role, will be released in April 2020.

Marr told NME: Part of the legacy of the Bond films is iconic music, so Im very happy to be bringing my guitar to No Time To Die.

The pair had previously collaborated together to score a number of projects, including Inception and The Amazing Spider-Man.

Zimmer replaces Dan Romer, who reportedly departed due to creative differences. It was Zimmers close friendship with Bond producer Barbara Broccoli that led to his initial involvement with the film. I never thought I would do this. I honestly never thought about it other than that Barbara Broccoli is a really dear friend, I just love her as a human being, very much, he said.

Zimmer is one of Hollywoods most high-profile composers, winning an Oscar for his 1994 theme for The Lion King. He is best known for his collaborations with Christoper Nolan on Inception, Interstellar and the Dark Knight movies.

Earlier this week, Billie Eilish announced she would be writing and singing the theme song to No Time to Die. The 18-year-old musician is youngest artist to provide the soundtrack to a Bond film, which has over the years morphed into an highly anticipated music event.

Eilish said: It feels crazy to be a part of this in every way. To be able to score the theme song to a film that is part of such a legendary series is a huge honour. James Bond is the coolest film franchise ever to exist. Im still in shock.

She follows some of the industrys biggest names in creating a song for the franchise, including Shirley Bassey, Paul McCartney, Duran Duran, Madonna, Sam Smith and Adele. The UKs Official Charts, which described Bonds theme songs as an integral part of British music and film legacy, notes that Smiths theme song for 2015s Writings On The Wall is the only one in the franchise to reach number one, while Duran Durans A View To A Kill and Adeles Skyfall each peaked at number two in 1985 and 2012 respectively.

Read more:

She spent her career being chased by vampires, 007 and David Hasselhoff. And she also found time to sing with Cream and Gary Numan. Was it all as much fun as it looked?

One day, 50 years ago, a solicitor walking to work through Waterloo station in London noticed a 30ft-tall woman. She was dressed in an unzipped scuba top and was brandishing a knife drawn from a scabbard strapped to her bare thigh. It was his daughter. Dad knew I was going to be the Lambs Navy Rum girl, but not that I would be on a billboard, says Caroline Munro. He said it was a bit of a shock.

Over the next decade, Munros parents got used to seeing their daughter writ large and wearing smalls. There she was on the cover of the Music for Pleasure Hot Hits 11 album, practising archery in a bikini and knee-high suede boots. There she was with Peter Cushing, exploring the underworld, in minimal clothes but lots of eyeliner, in At the Earths Core (1976). And there she was opposite David Hasselhoff in the 1978 movie Starcrash, her limbs swathed, but only in cellophane.

For a decade, she remained the face of Lambs Navy Rum. Join the Lambs Navy, went the slogan. Its where the action is. The Office for National Statistics holds no data on whether naval recruitment rose during the 1970s, but intuitively it seems likely that squads of would-be sailors signed up after seeing Munro wearing a naval jacket with epaulettes and little else.

With Christopher Plummer and David Hasselhoff in Starcrash. Photograph: Allstar

I loved the job, she says. We had shoots in all kinds of exotic places. And Cornwall. I remember being in the sea in the winter. Not a good day.

Didnt her religious parents object to their only child getting into the scanty end of modelling? I think they were pleased that I found a career that I enjoyed. I had dyslexia which, for a long time, really undermined my confidence. I think my mother hoped I would become a window dresser.

The unexpected path first opened up in the mid-60s when a photo a friend took of her when she was 16 won the Evening Newss Face of the Year competition, which was judged by David Bailey. She doesnt remember the snap, other than that she was freckly. Modelling gigs came quickly, including a shoot for American Vogue in which, she says, she had to sit in the sea off Malta modelling knitwear.

I am agog at the news: Roger Moore her co-star in The Spy Who Loved Me also started off as a knitwear model. Oh thats right! I knew there was something about him I liked. His knitwear was very classic, really.

In 1967, Munro, who had sung in her church choir, released her first single, a breathy ditty called Tar and Cement, recorded at Abbey Road. Her backing band was Eric Clapton, Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker, better known as Cream, alongside the future Yes guitarist Steve Howe. She remembers Baker driving her up the Mall in an open-topped Jaguar to the photoshoot; an image in keeping with the Austin Powers-ish tang of her life at this time. But its the B-side, This Sporting Life, the 70-year-old Munro sings to me today over coffee. Im getting tired of hanging around / Think I will marry and settle down / Because this old night life / This old sport life / Is killing me. I was only 16, just out of convent school when I sang that. It was ridiculous, really. I didnt know anything about living a sporting life.

Earlier that year, her dad had dropped her off at Elstree studios to play one of Woody Allens gun-toting guards in the James Bond spoof Casino Royale. We all wore chain mail dresses and gladiator boots. My mum was thrilled. She loved Woody Allens work.

Her first speaking role came in the 1969 comedy western A Talent for Loving. They wanted someone who looked Mexican. I had to speak with an accent. What was the story? My father has to marry me off because of the family curse we love too much. Essentially, the plot demanded that Munros character be cured of her ancestral nymphomania. My love interest in the film was Derek Nimmo. You mean Just a Minutes Derek Nimmo? Thats him. Lovely Derek!

With Christopher Lee in Dracula AD 1972. Photograph: Everett/Rex Shutterstock

But Munros big acting break, in 1972, was thanks not to such screen work but her continuing efforts for booze and seamen. James Carreras, head of Hammer horror, had also been transfixed by a Lambs Navy Rum billboard. As a result, she became like Ingrid Pitt, Joanna Lumley, Kate OMara fated to spend aeons being nibbled by gaunt men with false teeth.

She signed a contract at the studio and starred with Christopher Lee in Dracula AD 1972. That was when I realised I wanted to be an actor. It made me get serious and study for it. In Captain Kronos Vampire Hunter, she played the barefoot Gypsy girl Carla whom the eponymous captain saves from bloodsuckers. It has some fabulous dialogue. What he doesnt know about vampirism, says the captain of his hunchbacked assistant, wouldnt fill a flys codpiece.

They were planning a sequel, but it never happened, says Munro, sadly.

Despite a recent flip-flop-related fall that wrenched two fingers and left some nasty bruising on her face, Munro remains glamorous. Presumably she has been the victim of endless unwanted sexual advances? Again, her story is one of confounding sunniness. I wasnt! Everybody behaved very well to me. I didnt expect anything else. I think its terrible what these women have had to deal with. I was treated with great courtesy throughout my career, though.

Chasing James Bond in The Spy Who Loved Me. Photograph: Allstar

There was one near-incident, in fact, involving a Hollywood producer who had rented the whole top floor of Claridges hotel in London. I walked in, and I ran out. Why? He was with his girlfriend, but there was something wrong. Something I didnt care for. I just made my excuses and ran. It was an instinctive thing. She declines to elaborate, but mentions the film she was there to discuss: Two for the Road, the Stanley Donen-directed romcom starring Audrey Hepburn and Albert Finney.

In 1977, the producer of the Bond films, Cubby Broccoli, cast her as Bond villainess Naomi in The Spy Who Loved Me. In one scene, Roger Moores Bond arrives in Sardinia, posing as a marine biologist. Naomi, sporting a bikini and diaphanous peignoir, sashays to her boat, as Bond comments: What a handsome craft such lovely lines.

Later, Naomi is tasked with killing Bond and his accomplice, which she attempts to do from her helicopter, shooting at the Lotus Esprit while Bond negotiates Sardinian corniches. Then 007 turns the tables: his car, souped up by Q, becomes a submarine, which fires a deadly rocket at Naomis chopper. What do you remember of the shoot? Well, I didnt fly the helicopter. That was a lovely stunt man in a black wig. She filmed her scenes sitting in a helicopter in London.

No matter. Munro became a Bond girl. She talks enthusiastically about sharing memories with fellow members of that elite club on the festival circuit. The roles are getting better for women. When you think about it, the most iconic Bond girl is Judi Dench.

But after romping with Hasselhoff in space in Starcrash, whose spin-off merchandise includes a collectible Caroline Munro ray-gun-waving action figure (do leather bikini bottoms feature holsters as standard? Sure, why not?), she changed course. In the slasher film Maniac she played a photographer romanced by a New York serial killer who scalps his victims. It remains something of a cult favourite, although at the time it attracted some interest from some British police forces as a putative video nasty.

Munros musical endeavours also continued: in 1985, she recorded a single, Pump Me Up, with Gary Numan, a piece of electropop very much of its time. It was a big hit in Italy, she says. She would still like to make more records country rock, would be her preference, she says, before cautioning: You havent heard how out of tune I sound on some of my records. Im not exactly Aretha Franklin.

Munro and Gary Numan in 1985. Photograph: Mirrorpix/Alamy

Her career could have taken a different turn had she moved to the US. I went there to audition for some daytime soap in the 80s: Young and Restless or The Bold and the Beautiful I forget which. But my parents were ageing by then and I didnt want to leave them. Her loyalty to them also meant she turned down the role of comic book heroine Vampirella, for whom she would have to shed her clothes entirely.

Instead, she became a hostess on Ted Rogers Yorkshire TV gameshow 3-2-1 and had two daughters, Georgina and Iona, with her second husband, the writer-director George Dugdale who directed her in Slaughter High.

The journalist and broadcaster Samira Ahmed once wrote an article about how being Munros neighbour made her re-evaluate her loathing of 70s objectification. I saw her almost every day; those unmistakeable exotic eyes on a middle-aged mum: in the supermarket, walking her daughter to school, signing autographs on the street for bedazzled men. Perhaps she serves to remind us to be wary of sweeping judgments about decades and attitudes. For all the horrors that lurked within the 70s, many who were there did, after all, make their peace with it and grow up just fine.

Ive loved every minute of it and Ive been very lucky. Photograph: Alecsandra Raluca Dragoi/The Guardian

Ahmed is right: Munro made her peace and grew up fine. She is still wedded to 1970s horror, last year appearing in The House of the Gorgon, a crowdfunded Hammer homage movie directed by and starring a 23-year-old Texan, which was shot in six days. And she is also, with no apparent clash, all for female empowerment and recently went on the Womens March in London. I love the fact that women speak out now, she says, even if she remarkably never needed to. I never expected to become an actor. Ive loved every minute of it and Ive been very lucky.

The Spy Who Loved me is screened at the Regent Street Cinema, London, on 16 June, followed by a Q&A with Munro

Read more:

Movies, zombie TV shows, Halloween and even politics are influencing Mexicos celebrations which traditionally consist of quiet family gatherings

Mexico City held its first Day of the Dead parade on Saturday, complete with floats, giant skeleton marionettes and more than 1,000 actors, dancers and acrobats in costumes.

The impressive spectacle has never been a part of traditional Day of the Dead celebrations, however. Instead, it was born out of the imagination of a scriptwriter for last years James Bond movie, Spectre.

In the film, whose opening scenes were shot in Mexico City, Bond chases a villain through crowds of revelers.

Lourdes Berho, CEO of Mexicos tourism board, said 135,000 people were expected to attend the real-life parade.

Movies, zombie TV shows, Halloween and even politics are fast changing Mexicos Day of the Dead celebrations, which traditionally consist of quiet family gatherings at graves of loved ones, bringing them music, drink and conversation.

When [Spectre] hit the big screen and was seen by millions and millions of people in 67 countries, that started to create expectations that we would have something, Berho said.

We knew that this was going to generate a desire on the part of people here, in Mexicans and among tourists, to come and participate in a celebration, a big parade.

Mexico City authorities even promised that some of the props used in the movie would appear in the parade. The government board sponsoring the march called it part of a new, multi-faceted campaign to bring tourists to Mexico during the annual Day of the Dead holiday.

Women wear skeleton masks during a procession organized by sex workers to remember their deceased colleagues ahead of the Day of the Dead parade. Photograph: Ginnette Riquelme/Reuters

Some see a fundamental change in the traditional Mexican holiday. Johanna Angel, an arts and communication professor at Ibero-American University, said the influences flow both north and south.

She noted that US Halloween celebrations are now including more Mexican-inspired candy skull costumes and people dressed up as Catrinas, modeled on a satirical 19th-century Mexican engraving of a skeleton in a fancy dress and a big hat.

I think there has been a change, influenced by Hollywood, Angel said. The foreign imports are what most influence the ways we celebrate the Day of the Dead here.

Traditionally, on the 1-2 November holiday, Mexicans set up altars with photographs of the dead and plates of their favorite foods in their homes. They gather at their loved ones gravesides to drink, sing and talk to the dead.

In some towns, families leave a trail of orange marigold petals in a path to their doorway so spirits can find their way home. Some light bonfires, sitting around the fire and warming themselves with cups of boiled-fruit punch to ward off the autumn chill.

Many cities set up massive, flower-strewn altars to the dead and hold public events like parades, mass bicycle events and fashion shows in which people dress up in Catrina disguises.

Some say the changes do not conflict with the roots of the holiday, which they say will continue. On a recent Zombie Walk in which hundreds paraded through Mexico City in corpse disguises one week before the Day of the Dead most participants said it was just good, clean fun.

We are not fighting against our cultural traditions, said Jesus Rodriguez, one of the organizers, as he waved a fake plastic arm he was gnawing on. On the contrary, if you take off the zombie*s flesh, there are skeletons, there are Catrinas.

Mexicos traditional view of the dead is not ghoulish or frightful. The dead are seen as the dear departed, people who remain close even after death. Could outside influences threaten that?

I dont think that will change, Angel said. I think Mexico maintains the sense of remembering the dead with closeness, not fright.

Any opportunity for a festival is welcome and with any influences from at home or abroad, and in all possible combinations.

Read more: