The upcoming James Bond game from Hitman developer IO Interactive won’t be based on any of the actors who have portrayed 007 already, according to the studio’s director.
Working under the title Project 007, the game is said to be IO Interactive's next big release following the release of Hitman 3, and will tell a “completely original” Bond story focused on the origins of the iconic character.
Speaking to the Danish Broadcasting Corporation, Hakan Abrak, studio director for the developer, described how his team “have been allowed to make [their] own digital Bond, which will not lean on a Bond actor."
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In the past, almost all Bond games have relied upon the likeness to a big-screen actor as both a marketing tool and a way to ground their stories in a movie-like authenticity. In some cases, 007 games have swapped out one actor for another as a way of reimagining their stories for the modern era. GoldenEye 007, one of the most iconic games in the history of first-person shooters, was famously remastered for the Nintendo Wii with Daniel Craig’s Bond instead of Pierce Brosnan.
Abrak went on to confirm the originality of the studio's take on Bond and even suggested that it may be the first in a series of Bond games.
"We've also come up with a completely original story, and you could easily imagine that a trilogy could come out of it," Abrak said.
IO's confirmation that it isn't taking inspiration from any of Bond's film counterparts, and the previous confirmation that Project 007 will serve as an origin story for the character, suggests players could take control of a much younger 007 than fans might be used to.
A more mature interpretation
Abrak also commented on the sales pitch needed to convince the franchise’s chief film producer, Barbara Broccoli, to award IO Interactive the rights to make a Bond game.
He claims that the 'matriarch' of the James Bond license felt previous games had been "violence for the sake of violence," but that IO Interactive's original story, background with the Hitman franchise and “vision of what Bond is in a game format" were enough to impress her.
Project 007 (working title) is a brand new James Bond video game with a wholly original story. Earn your 00 status in the very first James Bond origin story, to be developed and published by @IOInteractive. pic.twitter.com/BRdKtARDSHNovember 19, 2020
In any case, Project 007 is probably a long way off. Beyond a brief teaser trailer released back in 2020, details on the game are few and far between, and given that Hitman 3 has only recently been released, it’s unlikely the studio has spent much time developing what we suspect is their flagship project of the next few years.
Let’s just hope we don’t have to wait as long as No Time to Die to enjoy it.