Producers of the much-anticipated 25th James Bond movie–starring Daniel Craig as 007 for the final time–have announced that Bohemian Rhapsody star Rami Malek has joined the cast as the film’s villain.
The Oscar winner was already in full Bond villain mode when he confirmed his latest gig via a video message on Twitter: “I promise you all I will be making sure Mr. Bond does not have an easy ride of it in this, his 25th outing.”
Previously, it was rumored that the film had a working title of Shatterhand, but as of yet it still remains untitled and is tentatively called Bond 25.
Director Cary Fukunaga also confirmed that Ralph Fiennes is returning as M, Naomie Harris as Moneypenny, former Maxim cover model Léa Seydoux as Madeleine Swann, Ben Whishaw as Q, Jeffrey Wright as CIA agent Felix Leiter, and Rory Kinnear as Bond ally Tanner.
New cast members include Ana de Armas, Dali Benssalah, David Dencik, Lashana Lynch, and Billy Magnussen.
Filming is scheduled to begin on April 28 and parts will be filmed in the Caribbean island nation of Jamaica where author Ian Fleming wrote all of the Bond novels and other Bond movies were shot.
“We’re thrilled to return to Jamaica with Bond 25, Daniel Craig’s fifth installment in the 007 series, where Ian Fleming created the iconic James Bond character and Dr No and Live And Let Die were filmed,” said producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli.
Other filming locations will include Norway, London, and Italy.
While still vague, the storyline is as follows:
Bond has left active service and is enjoying a tranquil life in Jamaica. His peace is short-lived when his old friend Felix Leiter from the CIA turns up asking for help.
The mission to rescue a kidnapped scientist turns out to be far more treacherous than expected, leading Bond onto the trail of a mysterious villain armed with dangerous new technology.
In an interview with Inquirer, Fukunaga explained that Bond 25 would carry on the story arc Craig’s Bond has been following since Casino Royale instead of being a standalone film.
“In his first Bond movie, Casino Royale, he brought an incredible amount of vulnerability and humanity to the character, which was a big shift from Pierce Brosnan’s run.
“In terms of what I can bring to change the character, Bond is on a character arc that started with ‘Casino Royale,’ and I will be carrying that on. There will be changes, I am sure. As in any story, a character has to change in order [to have] a narrative.”
Bond 25 is slated to hit theaters April 8, 2020.