No announcement has been made, but there’s chatter going around that the makers of the James Bond movies want to branch out. What franchise isn’t trying out a cinematic universe these days, after all? Bond is at the center of a 55-year-old film series that has already been through numerous changes, including its leading man. There were even a couple years when there were multiple actors playing 007 at the same time — of course, in both instances one of the movies wasn’t an official installment of the long-running franchise.
The rumor about the BCU or 007EU or whatever it would be called comes via the Tracking Board’s editor in chief, Jeff Sneider, though not on his site. Instead, he merely tweeted that he’s heard the Broccolis — that would be Barbara Broccoli and her half-brother Michael G. Wilson, who run EON Productions, makers of the Bond movies since the beginning (under founding leadership of her father and his stepfather, Albert R. “Cubby” Broccoli and Harry Saltzman). Here’s Sneider’s comment, in a thread on whether Daniel Craig would return for another stint as the iconic British spy:
I’ve heard the Broccolis have caught Universe Fever and would love to explore other corners of the Bond franchise… simultaneously.
— Jeff Sneider (@TheInSneider) June 23, 2017
Now the question on every fans’ mind is: how do you have a cinematic universe with a franchise focused on one lone hero? Well, they could spin off another spy, though that didn’t work very well for the Bourne franchise because the people want their main guy. They could give us a movie focused on American CIA agent Felix Leitner, which would be great if it gave Jeffrey Wright such a blockbuster gig. Or there’s Miss Moneypenny, who we saw in action in Skyfall played by Naomie Harris before she took a desk job. How about prequel showing the origins of Judi Dench’s version of M?
The other question, of course, is why? Yes, Bond is one of the original solo action heroes and ought to stay that way. It’s not like the MCU and DCEU, based on comic books that themselves have all kinds of crossover stories within their publications’ shared universes. And it’s not like the Dark Universe, which is based on one of the earliest cinematic crossover franchises, the Universal Monsters. Plus, lately moviegoers appear to have cinematic universe fatigue, though that will surely change next week when Marvel’s Spider-Man: Homecoming hits theaters. And hey, Spidey was a solo hero for five movies before entering the MCU.