With a guest list made up of Oscar winners and British royalty, James Bond film No Time to Die at last received its world premiere in London on Tuesday.
It was the city’s biggest red carpet event since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Wet weather failed to dampen spirits as Daniel Craig, dressed in an eye-catching pink velvet dinner jacket, and co-stars including Lashana Lynch and Lea Seydoux reunited for the hotly anticipated movie, which cinema operators hope will bring viewing figures back to pre-pandemic levels.
Among the premiere’s guest list were Britain’s Prince Charles, his son Prince William, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge. As a thanks for their frontline work fighting the pandemic, health workers and members of the armed forces were also invited.
No Time to Die, the 25th Bond movie, appears in cinemas from this week. It has been delayed three times since its original April 2020 slot as cinemas around the world were forced to shut their doors or restrict audience numbers.
The Universal Pictures and MGM film is Craig’s fifth and final outing as the suave British secret agent known for his love of fast cars and cool gadgets, wrapping up a 15-year tenure that began with 2006’s Casino Royale.
“It’s such a great relief. It was so important to me to come and celebrate with all the other cast and crew and to get it into the cinemas and we’re here,” Craig told reporters.
“A year ago I didn’t think that was going to happen.”
Asked what he was going to miss the most from playing 007, he said: “The people.”
Costing about $200 million to produce, No Time to Die centres around Bond coming out of retirement from an idyllic life in Jamaica to help track down a new villain, played by Oscar winner Rami Malek, armed with lethal technology.
It introduces new agent Nomi, played by Lynch.
“I’m just happy it’s here and we get to celebrate it in the way that it deserves,” Lynch said.
“I know the world is expecting this film,” said Seydoux, who reprises her Spectre role as Madeleine Swann.
“We tried to give the best, we gave everything to this film ... and I hope people will love it.”