Already easily the most successful movie in the 50-year-old James Bond franchise, Skyfall has become the film in the series to cross the $1 billion mark at the worldwide box office, a feat the movie achieved on Sunday, a little over two months after its October 23 world premiere in London. Skyfall had its wide release on North America on November 9.
Skyfall has grossed $289.6 million domestically and $710.6 million internationally. This handily beats the previous franchise-best, its predecessor, Quantum of Solace, which topped out at $586 million worldwide. It is also the first movie ever to earn more than 100 million pounds in the U.K., even beating out the highest-grossing movie of all time, Avatar.
Skyfall is only the 14th movie in history to cross the $1 billion mark, and the third for 2012, along with The Avengers and The Dark Knight Rises. Further proving its popularity with audiences, it is currently the third highest-ranked movie of 2012 on Flickchart, after its billion-dollar counterparts, and has supplanted Goldfinger as the highest-ranked Bond movie.
“Sometimes the old ways are still the best ways.”
This is the thesis of Skyfall, the 23rd James Bond film released in this 50th Anniversary year of the franchise. The point is articulated by different characters in the context of shaving and in planning for an assault, but it’s all over the film even when it goes unspoken. If Casino Royale was a deconstruction of 007, then Skyfall is the reconstruction. It’s not about reinstating the classic Bond Formula, though, nearly as much as it is finding a place in the modern era for the elements that helped to make Bond, Bond.
In the long-anticipated followup to 2008‘s Quantum of Solace, Daniel Craig‘s superspy 007 will face a villain portrayed by none other than Javier Bardem, whose portrayal of Anton Chigurh in No Country for Old Men is one of the most chilling performances of the past decade.
Naomie Harris will star in the film as Eve, an MI6 field agent. (She had previously been rumored to be taking on the role of Miss Moneypenny.) And Judi Dench will return as M. Also starring in the film are Ralph Fiennes, Ben Whishaw, Albert Finney and Berenice Marlohe.
Director Mendes promised “plenty of surprises” from Skyfall, claiming that the film is “its own story. It doesn’t connect with the last two movies.” This is a change from Quantum of Solace, which was a first for the Bond franchise in that it was a direct sequel to Casino Royale.
Skyfall begins shooting today in London. Mendes also let it be known that shooting will take place in Scotland, Istanbul and Shanghai. The film is currently set for an October 26, 2012 release date.