The director of the soon-to-be-released James Bond movie "No Time To Die" says past films depicted the fictional British spy as misogynistic — or worse.
In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, "No Time To Die" director Cary Fukunaga reflected on Bond films of the past and how the films wouldn't be acceptable in a post-#MeToo world.
"Is it 'Thunderball' or 'Goldfinger' where, like, basically Sean Connery's character rapes a woman?" Fukunaga told THR. "She's like 'No, no, no,' and he's like, 'Yes, yes, yes.' That wouldn't fly today."
In 1965's "Thunderball," Bond, portrayed by Sean Connery, forcibly kisses a nurse (Molly Peters) who had spurned his advances. Later, Bond tells her that he would keep silent about a potentially fireable offense she committed in exchange for sex.
"I suppose my silence could have a price," Bond says.
"You don't mean…oh, no," the nurse says while backing away from Bond. "Oh, yes," Bond says before the two enter a sauna.
In speaking with The Hollywood Reporter, Fukunaga said his production took steps to combat such issues with the current script. He invited writer Phoebe Waller-Bridge to work on a draft of his script so she could offer a woman's perspective.
Fukunaga dismissed the notion that the Bond in "No Time To Die" would be more "woke" than past iterations of the character. Instead, he hoped his film offered more depth to the female characters.
"From my very first conversations with [Bond producer Barbara Broccoli], that was a very strong drive. You can't change Bond overnight into a different person. But you can definitely change the world around him and the way he has to function in that world," Fukunaga said. "It's a story about a white man as a spy in this world, but you have to be willing to lean in and do the work to make the female characters more than just contrivances."
"No Time To Die" is slated for an Oct. 8 release. The film's release was delayed twice due to the pandemic. It will also mark the final Bond film for star Daniel Craig.