‘No Time to Die’ Projected for Big Opening but Probably Won’t Break James Bond Records

by Jennifer Shea

The latest James Bond installment is doing a respectable business at the box office, by pandemic standards, but it looks unlikely to set any records, including among James Bond movies.

“No Time to Die” brought in $23.3 million at North American box offices on Friday, its opening day, not too shabby considering the current climate, per The Hollywood Reporter.

That’s especially impressive considering the franchise depends on older audiences, the demographic most at risk of adverse COVID-19 outcomes, and thus most understandably hesitant to sit in crowded movie theatres amid the delta variant surge.

25th James Bond Movie Boasts One of the Best Openings of the Pandemic

Friday’s numbers have set “No Time to Die” on a trajectory to bring in $60 million, according to THR. That’s not outstanding by James Bond standards – especially considering it’s opening in 4,407 theatres, the biggest footprint of any Bond movie yet – but it does put the film among the top starters of pandemic times.

Unlike action and superhero flicks, Bond movies don’t typically have blockbuster openings. Plus, their audience has always trended older. And this time around, it also trended male.

64 percent of the opening-day audience for “No Time to Die” was male. And 57 percent of the audience was over 35, with 37 percent of viewers over 45 years old.

By comparison, Sony’s “Venom: Let There Be Carnage” opened to $90 million in box office sales last weekend. That blockbuster pandemic debut relied on younger audiences.

‘No Time to Die’ Long on Nostalgia, Short on Younger Audiences

At two hours and 43 minutes, “No Time to Die” is the longest James Bond film yet. And so it’s arguably crafted for audiences with longer attention spans.

The film is also banking on Bond nostalgia. This is Daniel Craig’s fifth and last appearance as James Bond, so it’s audiences’ last chance to catch him on the big screen in the iconic role.

Also starring in the film are Lea Seydoux, Ben Whishaw, Naomie Harris, Ralph Fiennes and Christoph Waltz. Newbies Rami Malek, Ana de Armas and Lashana Lynch round out the cast.

Cary Fukunaga directed “No Time to Die.” United Artists Releasing is distributing the film in the United States, while Universal is distributing it globally.