The James Bond film "No Time To Die" eventually had its delayed world premiere in London on Tuesday, with a guest list that included Oscar winners and the British monarchy, in the cinema's most high-profile red carpet since the commencement of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Daniel Craig, clad in an eye-catching pink velvet dinner jacket, and co-stars Rami Malek, Lashana Lynch, and Lea Seydoux reunited for the highly anticipated film, which theater operators believe will help bring audiences back to pre-pandemic levels, despite the rain.
The 25th Bond film, "No Time To Die," has been postponed three times since its planned April 2020 release date due to the epidemic forcing cinema theaters worldwide to close their doors and enforce audience size limitations.
Craig's fifth and last tour as the suave British secret agent, which began with 2006's "Casino Royale," is part of one of Hollywood's most enduring franchises.
"It's a tremendous relief. It was extremely essential to me to come and celebrate with the rest of the cast and crew, as well as to get the film into theaters, and now that we're here, "According to Reuters, Craig stated.
"A year ago I didn't think that was going to happen."
When asked what he would miss the most about his time as 007, he answered, "The people."
"No Time To Die," which is expected to cost $200 million to create, sees Bond emerge from retirement in Jamaica to assist in the pursuit of a new enemy, characterized by Oscar winner Malek as "mischievous(and) devious" and armed with lethal technology.
"The most daunting part was just coming up with a good story," Cary Joji Fukunaga, the filmmaker, remarked.
"I think of it as a last chapter of this one book where we (first) met Daniel in 'Casino Royale' (and) it's all part of the same story."
"I'm just happy it's here and we get to celebrate it in the way that it deserves." Lynch, who plays 00 agent Nomi, says in the film.
Prince Charles and his son Prince William, as well as their wives, attended the premiere. Health workers and armed forces members were also invited as a thank you for their frontline service during the outbreak.
Former Bond actress Judi Dench was in attendance, as was Grammy Award winner Billie Eilish, who sings the film's theme song.
"No Time To Die," which opens in theaters this week, is one of the season's most anticipated films.
"I know the world is expecting this film," said Seydoux, who plays Madeleine Swann in the sequel to "Spectre."
"We gave everything to this film ... and I hope people will love it."
The last two Bond films, 2015's "Spectre" and 2012's "Skyfall," made $880 million and more than $1 billion worldwide, respectively.
"Now that the cinemas are open we're really happy to be supporting the industry," producer Barbara Broccoli remarked.
"We made this film for the cinema and we want people to enjoy it."