It's proven to be a worthy investment for Sony as Casino Royale and its subsequent three films collected a whopping $3.5 billion at the worldwide box office (after adjusting for inflation). The other studios are Warner Bros., Universal, 20th Century Fox, and indie powerhouse Annapurna Pictures-which was behind movies like Her, Zero Dark Thirty, and Kathryn Bigelow's upcoming Detroit-but the Times story doesn't say what kind of lavish stunts they've pulled in an attempt to woo MGM and Eon. But there's also the fact that Sony Pictures' four-film deal with MGM and Eon Productions to distribute to James Bond series ended in 2015 after the release of Spectre. As for Sony, their presentation took place inside a sound stage on a recreated set from the first James Bond movie, 1962's Dr. No. And while Bond would be a nice addition to massive studios like Sony, WB, Universal, and 20th Century Fox, it could be a game-changer for up-and-comer Annapurna, which only recently became a distributor and has stuck mostly to pushing auteur-driven cinema as opposed to blockbusters.
The rights to 007 films are actually owned by EON and MGM, but they only produce the movies and need a distributor to handle the marketing.
That's according to a new report from The New York Times, revealing that MGM and Eon, the two companies now in control of the film rights, are soliciting pitches from all parties - that's including Sony, which held a deal for the previous four films in the spy series: Casino Royale, Quantum of Solace, Skyfall and Spectre.
As for whether or not a new actor will be coming on to play Bond, producers are hoping to get Daniel Craig back for one more movie. Because Bond is a guaranteed hit.