Bruce Feirstein, best known by James Bond fans for his work on the screenplays for GoldenEye, Tomorrow Never Dies, The World is not Enough and the 007 games Everything or Nothing and From Russia With Love, discussed how the titles for the Bond films come about in a new article at Vanity Fair.
Specifically, Feirstein details the odd turn of events that led to the final title of Pierce Brosnan’s second Bond film, 1997’s Tomorrow Never Dies:
‘So, how did the title for Tomorrow Never Dies come about? As Janet Maslin so kindly pointed out in her scathing pan in The New York Times, the title makes no sense. (Not that I remember every single word she wrote or anything.) The truth is that my original title was Tomorrow Never Lies, which appeared in the script as the “All the News That’s Fit to Print”–type slogan of Tomorrow, the flagship of an international newspaper chain owned by the evil media baron who was bent on (start macro here) Global Worldwide Domination.’
‘Anyway, as we went into production, the producers and the director (Roger Spottiswoode) couldn’t decide between Lies and Dies. After much debate, they finally picked Tomorrow Never Lies. They called in an assistant, dictated a fax, and she sent it off to MGM … with a single, one-letter typo–Dies instead of Lies. The rest is celluloid history.’
Feirstein added that he was initially having diffculty in coming up with any title for the film, but while driving to lunch one day, the Beatles’ “Tomorrow Never Knows” on the radio provided some inspiration.
Related to Tomorrow Never Dies, Feirstein also put an end to the rumours that villain Elliot Carver was based off of Rupert Murdoch.
‘In truth, the role model was the British press magnate Robert Maxwell, which is hinted at near the end of film, when Judi Dench, as M, instructs Moneypenny to issue a press release stating that the villain died “falling overboard on his yacht,” echoing Maxwell’s demise.’
Head over to Vanity Fair for Feirstein’s complete article on the Bond titles, including the newly announced Quantum of Solace.
His thoughts on Daniel Craig’s upcoming 007 adventure? ‘My bet is that it’s going to be a giant hit.’
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