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James Bond: Five Things That Would Have Improved The Oscars' 007 Tribute

Daniel Craig wearing tuxedo in Casino Royale
(Image credit: MGM)

As we all know, 2022 is the 60th anniversary of the James Bond movies. In the name of the 25 movies, and several Oscar nominations in the running for tonight’s Academy Awards ceremony, it’s a perfect time to have a montage celebrating the longest film series in history. The Academy did just that, and the results were respectable, but there were a couple things that could have changed which would have improved the Oscars' 007 tribute. With all due respect, let’s run through what could have been better.

Timothy Dalton and Carey Lowell sit in front of stacks of betting plaques in Licence To Kill.

(Image credit: Danjaq, LLC and MGM)

Having The Montage Presented By Some, If Not All, Surviving James Bonds

60 years of James Bond is a pretty huge event, and one major way it could have been celebrated would have been to get some, if not all, of the surviving Bonds to present. That’s not to say that having Tony Hawk, Kelly Slater and Shaun White introducing the big clip reel was a problem or anything. However, it did feel a bit out of place. 

While Daniel Craig might be busy with rehearsals for Macbeth, George Lazenby, Timothy Dalton and Pierce Brosnan could have almost certainly gotten in on the action. It’s happened at The Oscars before, and it could have been a fantastic highlight. Though in the absence of any Bonds in the room, there was someone else who could have jumped in.

Dame Judi Dench standing at her desk, with Jack the Bulldog in Skyfall.

(Image credit: Danjaq, LLC and MGM)

Including Dame Judi Dench In The 007 Montage Introduction

While none of the James Bonds seems to be in the room at the Oscars, Dame Judi Dench actually was. Nominated for her role in Belfast, one of the most formidable women in the 007 universe was already on hand for the night. Whether or not there was a Bond that could be wrangled for the night, not having Dame Judi involved in the tribute somehow seems like another wasted opportunity.

Lois Maxwell and Sean Connery share a hug at the office in Dr. No.

(Image credit: Danjaq, LLC and MGM)

The James Bond Tribute Reel Could Have Been Longer

I know, it’s The Oscars, and real estate on that stage doesn’t come cheap. That being said, this is a 60th anniversary that was covered in what felt like a very short collection of footage. With more time dedicated to the celebration, it would have felt like more of a special event than something included in the telecast as an obligation. Not to mention that a better sampling from every era of James Bond could have been included in the proceedings. 

Roger Moore as James Bond in The Spy Who Loved Me

(Image credit: EON Productions)

The James Bond Footage Could Have Used A Different Musical Approach

“Live and Let Die” is still an absolutely respected James Bond title track, and it deserves a spot in the montage, as it was the first Oscar nomination for a 007 tune. Setting the entire montage to that song felt a bit weird though, especially with the footage shown including several key deaths in the Bond franchise. A medley of themes from throughout the 60 years of James Bond would have been a better play, especially with the potential for a three song sweep in the air for this year’s Oscars.

Daniel Craig scowls while Billie Eilish sings in the No Time To Die music video.

(Image credit: Danjaq, LLC and MGM)

A Billie Eilish James Bond Medley Would Have Capped The Occasion Perfectly

No Time To Die was nominated for, among other things, Best Original Song, and it ultimately won the category. Not only that, Billie Eilish performed it earlier during the telecast tonight, and folks were probably already thinking she’d be singing as part of the 60th anniversary tribute to James Bond. That would have made sense, as Eilish could have sang a medley of previous 007 songs, leading into her own song from the Daniel Craig era of Bond films.

Each of these concerns ties into one general consensus: The Oscars’ 60th anniversary tribute to James Bond was ok, but it could have been better. With the music of 007 being a special focus this year, and No Time To Die potentially standing as the latest golden win for that particular legacy, the chance to celebrate that aspect would have been the best way to honor it all. 

At least the 60th anniversary of Bond is only getting started, so there will be plenty of opportunities to celebrate the good Commander. In the meantime, don’t forget to keep track of all the winners from the 94th Academy Awards tonight. 

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