Daniel Craig has defended the decision to delay No Time to Die until 2021.
The James Bond actor commented on Warner Bros’ move to push back the latest 007 film to be released next year, in light of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
No Time To Die was initially due to reach cinemas on April 1 of this year, but was pushed back to November. The film has now been delayed again, and is set for an April 2021 release.
Defending the studio’s decision, Craig told The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon: “This thing is just bigger than all of us. We just want people to go and see this movie in the right way, in a safe way.”
The actor added: “Cinemas all around the world are closed at the moment. We want to release the movie at the same time all around the world and this isn’t the right time.
“So fingers crossed, 2 April  is going to be our day.”
The decision to delay No Time To Die was considered a major blow for cinemas around the world, with the Cineworld chain announcing soon after that it would be closing all of its cinemas in the UK and the US.
“As major US markets, mainly New York, remained closed and without guidance on reopening timing, studios have been reluctant to release their pipeline of new films,” they said in a statement.
“In turn, without these new releases, Cineworld cannot provide customers in both the US and the UK – the company’s primary markets – with the breadth of strong commercial films necessary for them to consider coming back to theatres against the backdrop of COVID-19.”
A staff member from one of London’s Picturehouse branches, owned by Cineworld, told NME that Bond’s delay as “the final nail in the coffin” for them.
They added: “I’m extremely disappointed in [007 studio] MGM as No Time To Die could have saved the cinema industry. It’s what we were all holding out for.
“They could’ve been known as the studio that saved cinemas as opposed to the studio that condemned them.”