Bond Producer Barbara Broccoli Recalls 'Distressing Meeting' With Amy Winehouse Over Working On Quantum Of Solace

Daniel Craig and Olga Kurylenko walking in the desert in Quantum of Solace.
(Image credit: Danjaq, LLC and MGM)

History has shown that some of the best stories about the James Bond movies are the ones that tell us something that could have happened. In some cases, those alternate scenarios focus on castings or collaborators that fell through, making way for movies like No Time To Die to become their final formed product. However, producer Barbara Broccoli has shared a new tale which detailed a distressing meeting that could have landed the late Amy Winehouse the theme tune to Quantum of Solace.

In honor of the new Prime Video documentary The Sound of 007, EW spoke with the franchise’s producers about this celebration of James Bond music. Touching upon one of the greatest 'what ifs' in a history of already tantalizing alternate 007 themes, Barbara Broccoli shared this recollection of meeting with the “Rehab” singer: 

Well, that was a very very distressing meeting, she was not at her best and my heart really went out to her. She was very fragile emotionally and, you know, you understood how she could create such moving material, because she has a great depth of feeling and it was very very tragic. What an incredible talent, what an incredible voice, what an incredible person she was and it was very very sad.

The story of Amy Winehouse’s efforts to secure the title track to Quantum of Solace are both well-documented and still in need of clarification. Contemporary reporting in 2008 said that Winehouse was competing with Beyoncé for the gig, which still seems like a pretty powerful matchup. While it’s not totally known why she didn’t stick the landing, it’s theorized that Amy Winehouse’s documented troubles with addiction and mental health were part of the cause.

Eventually the job would go to Jack White and Alicia Keys, who provided the duet “Another Way To Die” for the second film in the Daniel Craig era of 007. While that song is among the more controversial picks in the James Bond theme tune library, it represents the boldness that Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson were working towards in the early years of Craig. 

Judging by Broccoli’s remarks above, as well as comments Jack White has made in other interviews, a picture forms for what Amy Winehouse could have done with Quantum of Solace’s opening number. The quotes provided here alone seem to hint that a more emotionally-moving ballad was probably favored by the producers, which would have matched the film’s story of vengeance in a time of grief. 

Unless a recording of the demos Winehouse supposedly completed resurfaces, there’s only so much we can assume about what that song would have sounded like. Then again, Eric Clapton’s James Bond theme for License to Kill was once considered lost forever, and we know how that story turned out. 

Perhaps we’ll learn more about the story behind this lost Amy Winehouse song in The Sound of 007, as the documentary is set to premiere on October 5th. A Prime Video subscription is all you’ll need to enjoy this historic celebration of 60 years in James Bond history. So be sure you’re up to date, as all 25 007 movies will also be part of the festivities, and you won’t want to miss out. 

Mike Reyes
Senior Movies Contributor

CinemaBlend's James Bond (expert). Also versed in Large Scale Aggressors, time travel, and Guillermo del Toro. He fights for The User.