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James Bond's No Time To Die release postponed due to COVID-19 outbreak

The film, which will see Daniel Craig return for his fifth and final outing as Bond, will hit cinemas in November instead.

James Bond's No Time To Die release postponed due to COVID-19 outbreak

Daniel Craig, Naomie Harris and Lashana Lynch at the Bond 25 filming launch in April 2019. (Photo: AFP/Getty Images North America/Roy Rochlin)

James Bond fans will have to wait a little longer to see what the secret agent gets up to next. The 25th Bond film No Time To Die has been postponed to November, as announced on the official James Bond Twitter account on Thursday (Mar 5).

The film was originally meant to make its international debut on Apr 2, with an Apr 10 release date in the US.

The post on Twitter announced: "After careful consideration and thorough evaluation of the global theatrical marketplace, the release of NO TIME TO DIE will be postponed until November 2020.”

According to Variety, the COVID-19 outbreak has led to widespread closures of theatres in major regions such as South Korea, China, Japan and Italy. The original April release dates would have severely hampered sales for No Time To Die.

The COVID-19 situation has led to questions over whether this is the best time to release a film. Variety’s inside sources revealed that theatre closures have had a big impact on profit margins, with revenues in markets like Hong Kong and Taiwan dropping by 50 per cent and sales in Italy grinding to a halt.

With a reported budget of more than US$200 million (S$277 million), the international market is something the Bond film cannot afford to lose. 

No Time To Die’s new opening schedule will now have to contend with the Warner Bros film Godzilla Vs Kong and Disney’s Raya And The Last Dragon.

Directed by Cary Fukunaga, No Time To Die marks Daniel Craig’s fifth and final outing as 007. Joining him in the film is Rami Malek, who plays Bond’s antagonist.

Nov 12 has been set as the new release date in the UK, with worldwide release dates to follow. The film will launch in the US on Nov 25. 

Source: CNA/sr