Eon Productions (an abbreviation of "Everything or Nothing") is a British film production company that primarily produces the James Bond film series. The company is based in London's Piccadilly and also operates from Pinewood Studios in the United Kingdom.
|Private company limited by shares|
|Founder||Albert R. "Cubby" Broccoli|
|Michael G. Wilson|
|Products||James Bond films|
Eon, a closely held (public and family) corporation, was started by film producers Albert R. "Cubby" Broccoli and Harry Saltzman in 1961, at the same time they became partners and sought financing for Dr. No the year before they formed Danjaq, which for legal reasons became Eon's holding company, from which it licenses the copyright protections allowing Eon to produce the Bond films.
Broccoli had been interested in the Bond novel rights for several years but was dissuaded from pursuing the project by his former partner. When they dissolved their relationship he was free to pursue the property, for which Saltzman, a novice to film production, had taken a gamble to acquire. The two were introduced by a New York writer who was acquainted with both, and formed a partnership within a week of meeting. The enterprise was and is still a family business, including both wives of the principal partners, as well as several of their progeny, the latter group now carrying on their parents' work. Albert almost immediately included Dana Broccoli's college-aged son Michael G. Wilson in the early films, doing various production jobs. His engineering education was put to use in some of the series' special effects.
In 1975, after nine films, Harry Saltzman sold his shares of Danjaq to United Artists (the then-current series distributor). Although Albert R. Broccoli died in 1996, Eon Productions is still owned by the Broccoli family, specifically Albert R. Broccoli's daughter, Barbara Broccoli, and his stepson and her half-brother by actress Dana Wilson Broccoli, Michael G. Wilson, who are the current producers of the films.
Albert R. Broccoli's name has appeared in the opening "presents" credit of every Eon-produced James Bond film, and as the first name in the credits from The Spy Who Loved Me onwards. From Dr. No through The Man with the Golden Gun, the credit was "Albert R. Broccoli and Harry Saltzman present"; for some films Saltzman came first (and still does in the film itself and/or its original posters), but all present-day printed credits have been changed to list Broccoli first. After Saltzman left, the opening credit was "Albert R. Broccoli presents" through to GoldenEye (the last film made before Broccoli's death), even after Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson replaced him as producers. On all films since Broccoli's death, the opening credit is "Albert R. Broccoli's Eon Productions presents", with "Ltd." usually added after "Productions" in the film proper.
The 1965 film Thunderball differs from the others in how it credits Saltzman and Broccoli; due to a legal agreement with Kevin McClory related to the rights to Ian Fleming's original novel, McClory received producer credit on the film, with Saltzman and Broccoli credited as executive producers. This agreement also gave McClory the rights to remake Thunderball in the future, resulting in the 1983 non-EON production, Never Say Never Again. McClory would attempt to remake the story a second time in the 1990s, but was prevented from doing so.
The copyrights and trademarks for the film properties (beginning with Dr. No) are held by Danjaq and United Artists Corporation; the latter was bought by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer in 1981, but as an MGM subsidiary its name still appears in Bond copyright and trademark disclaimers. Casino Royale (2006), Quantum of Solace (2008), Skyfall (2012) and Spectre (2015) were co-distributed with Columbia Pictures (which appeared along with Danjaq and United Artists in their copyright disclaimers). With the revival of the United Artists – formed as a joint venture between MGM and Annapurna Pictures under the label United Artists Releasing – as well as the expiration of Columbia Pictures' deal with the Bond franchise, the distribution of No Time to Die (2020) will be shared between United Artists Releasing (domestically) and Universal Pictures (internationally), while Danjaq retains the essential rights to the film.
The video rights for all of Eon's films are owned by MGM Home Entertainment, and are controlled by MGM's distributor 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment. Sony Pictures Home Entertainment initially assumed the video rights to Casino Royale, but the 2012 home video editions of this film were issued by MGM and 20th Century Fox.
The Bond films produced by Eon Productions are:
- Dr. No (1962)
- From Russia with Love (1963)
- Goldfinger (1964)
- Thunderball (1965)
- You Only Live Twice (1967)
- On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969)
- Diamonds Are Forever (1971)
- Live and Let Die (1973)
- The Man with the Golden Gun (1974)
- The Spy Who Loved Me (1977)
- Moonraker (1979)
- For Your Eyes Only (1981)
- Octopussy (1983)
- A View to a Kill (1985)
- The Living Daylights (1987)
- Licence to Kill (1989)
- GoldenEye (1995)
- Tomorrow Never Dies (1997)
- The World Is Not Enough (1999)
- Die Another Day (2002)
- Casino Royale (2006)
- Quantum of Solace (2008)
- Skyfall (2012)
- Spectre (2015)
- No Time to Die (2020)
Other production companies were responsible for the Bond productions Casino Royale (1954), Casino Royale (1967) and Never Say Never Again (1983); the first is a one-hour TV film produced for an anthology series and the others are feature films produced for the cinema, while Never Say Never Again was a remake of Thunderball.
Since its first film, Dr. No in 1962, Eon has only made three non-Bond films: Call Me Bwana (1963), starring Bob Hope, Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool (2017) and The Rhythm Section (2020). Saltzman and Broccoli produced other films separately: Broccoli produced the film Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, based on a book by Ian Fleming; Saltzman produced several non-Bond films during this time including The Ipcress File and Battle of Britain.
Other non-Bond projects from either 1963 or 1964 – The Marriage Game written by Terry Southern and to have been directed by Peter Yates and The Pass Beyond Kashmir based on the novel by Berkely Mather – did not go into production.
In 2008, Eon signed a deal with Columbia Pictures to develop fifteen thrillers and family films outside the Bond franchise, with budgets of up to $80 million (£40 million). The company hopes the move will allow more British writers to establish themselves in the United States.
Eon Productions is set to produce the upcoming adaptation of Mark Burnell's first book in the Stephanie Patrick series, titled The Rhythm Section. It will star Blake Lively and will be directed by Reed Morano, and will be distributed by Paramount Pictures. The film is set for release on 31 January 2020.
In 2000, Eon productions served a cease and desist letter to Cheapass Games to stop it from using the name "Mr. Bond" in the title of its game Before I Kill You, Mr. Bond. In 2004, the game was reissued under the title James Ernest's Totally Renamed Spy Game.
- "EON PRODUCTIONS LIMITED". Company Check.
- Ken Gelder, Popular Fiction: The Logics and Practices of a Literary Field, Routledge, 2004, p. 31.
- DVD and Blu-ray copies of Eon's Bond films.
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- MGM Re-Ups DVD Deal With Fox Through 2016 Archived 11 January 2014 at the Wayback Machine, deadline.com
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- Hill, Lee (2010). A Grand Guy: The Art And Life of Terry Southern. HarperCollins. p. no page number. ISBN 0380977869.
- "FILMS THAT NEVER HAPPENED: "THE PASS BEYOND KASHMIR" - Celebrating Films of the 1960s & 1970s". Cinemaretro.com.
- Alberge, Dalya (10 April 2008). "Bond moves over for Hollywood deal". London: entertainment.timesonline.co.uk. Retrieved 12 April 2008.
- "Blake Lively Spy Thriller 'The Rhythm Section' Picked Up by Paramount". The Hollywood Reporter. 16 August 2017. Retrieved 19 August 2017.
- "Blake Lively to Star in Spy Thriller From Bond Producers". The Hollywood Reporter. 12 July 2017. Retrieved 19 August 2017.
- McNary, Dave; McNary, Dave (24 August 2019). "Blake Lively's 'Rhythm Section' Moved Back to 2020". Variety. Retrieved 24 August 2019.