Apple and Amazon have joined the bidding war to sign the rights to the James Bond franchise. There’s a sentence you probably didn’t think you’d see this morning.
In case you didn’t know, the Bond franchise’s deal with Sony expired after the release of Spectre back in 2015. Since then several companies have expressed interest in signing the rights to 007, with Warner Bros becoming the frontrunner – that is, up until now.
According to an exclusive in the Hollywood Reporter, both Apple and Amazon have emerged as suitors. The report states that the tech giants view Bond as one of the few remaining brands that hasn’t been tapped to its full potential – and let’s face it, it’s more than likely that Apple and Amazon have deeper pockets than any production house in Hollywood.
Now, the idea of Silicon Valley heavyweights buying the rights to the Bond franchise isn’t as whacky as it sounds. Amazon has been doing very well for itself with Amazon Prime shows and movies. The Amazon backed Manchester By The Sea, for example, walked away with two Academy Awards this year, including the best actor gong for its star Casey Affleck.
Apple, for its part, has two new arrivals in the form of Zack Van Amburg and Jamie Erlicht, who once served as co-presidents of Sony Pictures Television.
The Hollywood Reporter says that their move to Apple “would suggest that Apple is interested in cutting a larger rights deal or acquiring full ownership to exploit Bond’s largely unmined TV potential. Valuation of the franchise may be anywhere between $2 billion and $5 billion, says an insider.”
It’ll be interesting to see how this develops. Also, given the amount of product placement in Bond movies these days, it’s likely that, depending on who wins the franchise, 007 could be yapping on an iPhone or reading a Kindle in the next instalment.[Source: The Hollywood Reporter]