Bond Goes Back to His Roots in Jamaica.
With the whispers of the 25th Bond movie being confirmed, we now know the debonair spy is returning to the big screen in April 2020 and we’re pleased to report that the storyline saw the cast begin filming on the idyllic shores of Jamaica. Titled ‘No Time to Die’, the latest film is already set to be a hit and we cannot wait to see what’s in store for the 007 agents.
You don’t need to be a film buff to know that Ian Fleming, the creator of James Bond, lived in Jamaica. The English author, journalist and British Naval Intelligence Officer resided on the beautiful island in a house called Goldeneye no less. Fleming used his time here to write his best-selling Bond novels. Let’s take a look at the plans for the new movie and what it is that made Jamaica such a special place for this novelist.
What we know about the latest James Bond movie so far
With constant conjecture around the James Bond films and mutterings of development for the next Bond movie as early as 2016, it’s no surprise the speculations started early. What will it be called? Where will it be set?
With the release set for Spring 2020, lots of these rumours have now come to fruition. The title for example, ‘No Time to Die’, had previously been rumoured to be ‘Shatterhand’, which would have been named after the Bond villain, Ernst Stavro Blofeld, from Fleming’s novel, ‘You Only Live Twice’. The accurate title was announced in August 2019, subsequently leaving us with the speculation of the plot. Does ‘No Time to Die’ suggest Bond is far too busy to be killed?
What we do know about the plot is fairly minimal, with the official synopsis detailing that we join Bond in Jamaica, where he has chosen to retire. His peace is soon disrupted by Felix Leiter, his old friend from the CIA, asking for help. A kidnapped scientist, a treacherous mission and a mysterious villain armed with new technology are what follows.
We know that filming began in Jamaica and that Jamaica is a special place for Bond, so we’ll touch on this in more detail later. First, let’s take a look at some of the other settings Bond ventures to:
If you’ve seen any of the earlier films, you’ll know that Bond and Italy go hand-in-hand, with him having travelled to Venice, Rome, Siena, Lake Como, Lake Garda, Cortina D’Ampezzo and the Sardinian coast. The dramatic, varied landscapes and beautiful, romantic cities are perfect for the suave spy.
Bond 25 sees Daniel Craig in Southern Italy in a car chase through the streets of Matera and onto the beautiful town of Gravina, in Puglia, with its high rocky walls and picturesque historic churches. The crew move on to Sapri and shoot in the town’s Midnight Canal and train station.
If you’ve never been, Norway is a must. It’s the most beautiful, breathtaking country, blessed with vast mountains, awe-inspiring glaciers and staggering fjords. When put like that, it’s no surprise Bond creators chose to film there.
The set is in Nittedal, which is 18 miles north of Oslo. The crew have been sighted at a frozen lake, but, with warming temperatures, had to improvise with artificial snow. As well as Nittedal, the team returned to Norway to shoot a driving sequence along the hair-raising Atlantic Ocean Road.
Being the home of the headquarters, London, is, of course, going to appear in the latest Bond film. Our capital is home to some significant architecture and with so much to do, a trip here, no matter whether it’s just for a day or a weekend or longer, is sure to be memorable. Filming was seen in West London, on the banks of the Thames, as well as the usual Bond haunts; Daniel Craig was spotted driving his Aston Martin V8 Vantage and crossing into the Ministry of Defence.
Filming was also seen with the Army’s Household Cavalry, who is the Queen’s official bodyguard, and kept at the Hyde Park Barracks in London.
Now let’s get back to Bond’s roots. As mentioned, Jamaica was a special place for Ian Fleming, who chose the island as his winter home, somewhere he could retreat and spend his days writing. Consequently, the 007 novels are packed full of Jamaican landmarks, especially ‘Dr No’, ‘Live and Let Die’ and ‘The Man with the Golden Gun’, which was set on the island. ‘No Time to Die’ is the first film to return to the island since Sir Roger Moore played Bond in 1974.
Barbara Broccoli, the producer of Bond 25, has said Jamaica was the “spiritual home” of Bond, and it’s clear to see why.
We’ll start at the heart of Bond – Ian Fleming’s home in Jamaica, aptly called Goldeneye. It is now a beautiful, peaceful hotel made up of stand-alone beach villas, lagoon cottages and beach huts. It welcomes anybody from artists and writers to spies and seducers! The hotel overlooks James Bond Beach, in Oracabessa, famous for the scene with Ursula Andress emerging from the water to meet James Bond for the first time. The hotel offers water sports from paddle boarding to sailing on the hotel’s main beach, Low Cay. Low Cay is 500ft of white sands – you’ll feel like you’ve been washed up on a deserted island. The food is incredible, from fresh fish to homemade burgers on rustic Button Beach. If you’re a James Bond fan and looking for a break from the rest of the world, as Fleming did, this hotel is for you.
If you fancy following in Bond’s footsteps to the Half Moon Bay Resort, where Bond spent a night with Rosie Carver in ‘Live and Let Die’, then head to Montego Bay. You will not be disappointed. This stunning hotel sits on over 2 miles of beachfront and is home to the largest award-winning spa in Jamaica, a championship golf course, an equestrian centre and award-winning restaurant, Sugar Mill. Sunset and Sunrise Beach will see that you relax fully… distractions come only in the form of a swim or a cocktail.
As well as these two hotels, the island is dotted with filming spots; it is fair to say the beauty of Jamaica has really shone through in the James Bond films.
If you fancy a bit of adventure, take a trip to White River where you can enjoy some white-water rafting. Located just 7 miles from the centre of Ocho Rios, this stunning natural jungle location is home to lagoon pools and white limestone cliffs. Or you could venture out to the world-famous Dunn’s River Falls. These falls are one of the most popular tourist attractions in Jamaica and they are simply stunning – the perfect day out away from your hotel.
Filming for Bond 25 began in Port Antonio, which is a gateway for tourists coming to Jamaica. It’s on the northeast coast and provides easy access to tropical jungles, mountains and waterfalls, including the magnificent Reach Falls in John Crow Mountain and the majestic Blue Lagoon, known for its blue waters coming from the Caribbean Sea and underground springs.
We think Jamaica’s capital city, Kingston, is where any visitor should start. It was the main location for the film ‘Dr No.’ and it’s very clear to see why. This bustling city is the cultural hub of the island. The atmosphere is like no other city as the locals expertly mix work with play. Music, art galleries, incredible restaurants, and stunning beaches – if this sounds like it’s up your street, get in touch and we’ll soon have you on your way feeling as sophisticated as Bond himself.