'No Time to Die' Release Date Pushed Back Amid Coronavirus Concerns

The release date for the 25th James Bond film, No Time to Die, has been pushed back to the fall due to concerns over the coronavirus outbreak.

The film was set to premiere March 31st in London, with a North American release date of April 10th. It will now be released in the U.K. on November 12th and in the U.S. on November 25th. Worldwide release dates will follow.

A statement posted to the James Bond social media pages reads: “MGM, Universal and Bond producers, Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli, announced today that after careful consideration and thorough evaluation of the global theatrical marketplace, the release of No Time to Die will be postponed until November 2020.” The film will be released in the U.K. on November 12, 2020 with worldwide release dates to follow, including the U.S. launch on November 25, 2020.

A source at MGM tells Rolling Stone that the decision was based on theater closures in China, South Korea, Japan, Italy and France, plummeting box office numbers in international markets and a desire to ensure the film has a successful worldwide release. “The film wouldn’t have its greatest chance of success because there are too many unknowables at this point,” the source said. “This is a global film; this is the first time the movie’s been in a marketplace in five years. We really believe in the theatrical experience, we want this to be a theatrical experience in the same spirit of the other films.”

Prior to the official decision to push back the release date of No Time to Die, the founders of two James Bond fan sites, MI6 Confidential and the James Bond Dossier, began advocating for such a move in an open letter issued Monday. The letter noted the problems in the international market, but also raised concerns that the film’s April arrival would coincide with potential outbreak spikes in the U.S. and the U.K.

“Delay the release of No Time to Die until the summer when experts expect the epidemics to have peaked and to be under control,” the letter urged. “It’s just a movie. The health and wellbeing of fans around the world, and their families, is more important. We have all waited over four years for this film. Another few months will not damage the quality of the film and only help the box office for Daniel Craig’s final hurrah.”

Even before the latest decision to push its release date, No Time to Die has had one of the bumpiest roads to release of any film in recent memory. It was originally slated for a November 2019 release with Danny Boyle directing, but it was postponed after Boyle left and was replaced by Cary Joji Fukunaga. Later, Fleabag and Killing Eve mastermind Phoebe Waller-Bridge was brought in to help further punch up the script.

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