The next film in the James Bond franchise is set to begin shooting under the working title Shatterhand. The industry publication Production Weekly put a listing for “Bond 25 w/t Shatterhand” in its Feb. 21 newsletter, with production slated to begin at London’s Pinewood Studios on April 6.
The news comes just days after the film was pushed back to an April 2020 release date due to reports of extensive script rewrites. Shatterhand is the subject of much speculation, as it is set to be Daniel Craig’s fifth and final appearance as the famous MI6 agent.
Shatterhand has long been rumored to be in contention as a title for the 25th Bond film. It’s an alias used by supervillain Ernst Stavro Blofeld, who was portrayed by Christoph Waltz in the last film Spectre and also appeared in Ian Fleming’s 1964 Bond novel You Only Live Twice.
Cary Fukunaga will direct the new film, and Scott Z. Burns, the writer best known for penning The Bourne Ultimatum and The Informant!, has been hired to rework the script. Original writer and director Danny Boyle dropped out in August 2018 amid creative differences with the film’s producers. Since then, script drafts have surfaced by Paul Haggis, and series writers Neal Purvis and Robert Wade.
Little else is known about the production, but there have been reports that the writers are attempting to build more of a universe for the Bond franchise is the next few films. However, Waltz will reportedly not return as Blofeld, leaving the future of the long-anticipated character in limbo. Blofeld was last seen getting captured by MI6 at the end of Spectre , but with a working title like Shatterhand, it’s likely he will be involved in some capacity.