Daniel Craig’s James Bond deserves the most formidable of villains—especially in what is rumored to be his final outing as the dapper spy. And he’s getting one: On Thursday, James Bond 25 (the movie has yet to receive an official title) producers announced that Rami Malek will be joining the cast as Bond’s antagonist.
Producers Barbara Broccoli, Michael G. Wilson, and director Cary Joji Fukunaga made the announcement during a live-streamed press conference held in Jamaica, where Dr. No and Live and Let Die were filmed, and the main setting of the upcoming film. In addition to Jamaica, James Bond 25 will also be shot in Norway, Italy, and London.
Malek wasn’t in Jamaica with the rest of the cast and production team, but reacted to the news in a short clip posted on social media. “I’m stuck here in New York in production but I’m very much looking forward to joining the whole cast and crew,” he said. “I promise you all I will be making sure Mr Bond does not have an easy ride in this, his 25th outing.” There’s no word yet on his character’s name.
Joji confirmed that Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris, Rory Kinnear, Léa Seydoux, Ben Whishaw, and Jeffrey Wright will be returning to Bond, and introduced newbies Ana de Armas, Dali Benssalah, David Dencik, Lashana Lynch, and Billy Magnussen. Killing Eve creator Phoebe Waller-Bridge will join the team of Bond screenwriters.
The film picks up with Bond on vacation in Jamaica. According to the press release, Bond “has left active service and is enjoying a tranquil life in Jamaica.” His vacation is cut short when he gets a visit from old pal Felix Leiter from the CIA, who asks for Bond’s help to rescue a kidnapped scientist. And because it’s a Bond film, the rescue mission is no easy feat, which leads him to a “mysterious villain”—Malek’s character, who is “armed with dangerous new technology.”
The film is slated to be released in April 2020.