This weekend marks the 70th anniversary of the inception of Ian's Fleming's first James Bond book. In the meantime, the world's most famous secret agent is on the brink of his 25th cinematic adventure.
During last night's annual Oscar gala in Hollywood, the 18 year-old, multiple Grammy winner Billie Eilish was supposed to perform the new James Bond theme song. Instead, she threw everyone off-balance by singing "Yesterday" by The Beatles' during an In Memoriam intermezzo. Its purpose, however, was achieved: the suspense around the latest Bond instalment has reached new heights.
No Time To Die, the 25th James Bond film which also is the last to star Daniel Craig will be premiering on April 2nd. Up until that moment, the PR machine will be rumbling uninterruptedly.
The creator of it all, author Ian Fleming (born May 28th 1908 in London) could never have fathomed his secret agent with a license to kill would become such an everlasting global success. The first book, which he started writing exactly 70 years ago, curiously would not become the story that initiated the James Bond franchise. Instead, a 1967 parody with David Niven and Peter Sellers predeceased Daniel Craig's first appearance as Her Majesty's Secret Service'sfinest agent in the franchise's 2006 release. After Casino Royale, many books and movies have followed, in which sensational automobiles and breathtaking women maintained a pleasant constant.
No Time To Die is no exception here. Looking at the cars, the infamous British prestige brand Aston Martin is traditionally featured generously. The first time James Bond spoke the famous words shaken, not stirred , was also the first time he stepped into an Aston Martin. This happened in Goldfinger (1964), where he drives the DB5, which owed its fame to the movie. After Thunderball (1965), the DB5 retired, only to return back to the stage in Casino Royale. Moreover, the Aston starred in Skyfall and Spectre as well.
007's Aston Martins in No Time To Die include the DB5 (again), the V8 Vantage, the DBS Superleggera and the phenomenal Valhalla. Just like the Aston Martin Valkyrie, the Valhalla was developed together with Red Bul Advanced Technologies. Currently, only 500 of them are scheduled to be built. Powered by a V6 turbo engine collaborating with a hybrid powertrain, the Valhalla gets to enjoy 1000 BHP.
Naturally, the Valhalla isn't exactly a bargain. Those who are interested will need to put down €250.000 in advance and will eventually be over a million euros lighter, taxes excluded. Aston Martin will be introducing the supercar to the market in 2021.
So far, it's still unknown whether the new Land Rover is able to take a proper beating. It was only introduced recently and for some reason, we at Secret Agents haven not yet been invited to take it for a spin. But if we can take the involved stunt men and women's word for it, the new Defender is perfectly competent. And that's not just words. The images we've seen here prove that this new SUV hasn't been handled with silk gloves.
The producers chose Land Rover's 110 Defender-X edition to feature in one of the film's most important car chases. It's one of the first cars manufactured in Jaguar Land Rover's production facility in Nitra, Slovakia.
When we saw the new Bond film's trailer , all the action certainly made our hearts pound, but when the new Bond girl entered the frame, they went straight into cardio mode. James' female counterpart this time, is the gorgeous actress Ana de Armas (31) from Cuba. And nobody will need to explain why.
Before snatching up the coveted role of Bond girl, Ana de Armas already had drew a lot of attention in War Dogs (2016) and Blade Runner 2049 (2017). Her acting talent obviously being one of the reasons, but it's her eyes in particular that set her apart. After taking a peek into her Instagram, we were sold: Ana de Armes is the ultimate Bond girl.
Alongside the Cuban beauty, another noticeable actress to make an appearance in No Time To Die is the French actress Léa Seydoux. In fact, after her introduction in 2015's Spectre, the actress to portray Madeline Swann is the first to appear in more than one Bond film. In 2009, she became a César nominee for her role in La Belle Personne.
Apart from No Time To Die, Léa appeared in various notable Hollywood movies such as Ridley Scott's Robin Hood, Woody Allen's Midnight In Paris and Brad Bird's Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol. For their roles in La Vie d'Adèle, Seydoux and fellow actress Adèle Exarchopoulos received a Golden Palm at the Cannes Film Festival. A woman with substance and undeniable acting talent!
All of the above is to be seen in a story in which Bond has retired as an MI6 agent, enjoying a well-deserved, less hectic life on Jamaica. Alas, his peace promptly gets disrupted after his old CIA friend Felix Leiter asks him for help. The mission to rescue a kidnapped scientist suffers from an unexpected twist and leads Bond to a mysterious villain, who has very different, lethal plans with his invention.
Last but not least, we'd like to sign off with a note on our own "Bond girls". 007 may be the most famous secret agent in the world, but definitely not the most approachable one. Luckily, our own Secret Agents are a bit easier to encounter. Moreover, according to Israeli secret service's Meir Dagan, their best secret agents are women. "They're more controlled, have more talent and are braver than many men. Their contribution is priceless. Believe me, they're better than men.", the former Mossad director stated. Just saying.