Ernst Stavro Blofeld (Donald Pleasence)

Nobody does it better. The new April 2020 issue of the popular and best-selling British cinema magazine Empire, which has just hit retail shelves in the UK, includes a special bonus magazine entitled Bond: The Ultimate Celebration, with an introduction by Cary Joji Fukunaga, the director of No Time To Die.

In his introduction to the bonus Bond mag, Fukunaga reveals that he first saw 007 in the guise of Roger Moore in A View To A Kill, and was captivated ‘by the mesmerising mixture of glamour, deftly judged humour and, of course, action’. He also mentions that the clincher, for him, was Duran Duran’s ‘enduring credit song’ for the movie.

The new Bond director also notes that: ‘Bond is a cultural icon, a figure that impacts every successive generation of film fans who are introduced to him’. Cary adds that he is ‘honoured’ to be carrying the 007 franchise forward. And, in his estimation, as the pages of the bonus Bond mag prove, ‘over five decades Bond’s appeal has never waned’.

The bonus mag then provides Empire readers with 55 pages of features in celebration of key elements of the franchise, such as the classic songs, the opening sequences, the opening titles, the plots, the directors, the iconic villains, the lairs and the women of the previous 24 movies. For aficionados of the music of James Bond, for example, there is a fascinating analysis of the creation by John Barry of the song Goldfinger (which includes a rare photo of Barry with a young Shirley Bassey).

Moreover, in a sequence entitled ‘The 007 Dossier’, Bond producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson offer their views on Empire‘s pick of rare behind-the-scenes images from past Bond movies. For those interested in the 007 directors, there are profiles of John Glen, Martin Campbell, Michael Apted, Lee Tamahori and Marc Forster, with their views on the experiences of being a 007 director. Special articles are also devoted to the first Bond movie Dr. No and to Roger Moore’s final film A View to A Kill.

With plenty of glossy stills and various behind-the-scenes photos, the bonus mag will wet our appetites while we wait for No Time To Die, the 25th entry in the smash-hit series, and it will be a must for all collectors of James Bond printed material.

Empire magazine (April, 2020), with the bonus Bond magazine, is on sale now in the UK, priced £5.99. Watch this space for further 007 news as it develops. You know the name, and you know the number. Bond is well and truly back!

Goldfinger Alternative UK Quad Poster