It’s time to #BringBondtoBrussels, says cultural organisation
With secrets intact as critics were not allowed to see it ahead of time, the new James Bond film – No Time to Die – is finally in cinemas around the world. And while you will see the splendours of Jamaica, Italy, Scotland, Norway and, of course, London, in the film, you will not see Belgium.
“There are 25 James Bond films, and in not a single one has James Bond been to Brussels,” says Imane Belguenani, chair of Willemsfonds, in a new video. It’s part of the campaign #BringBondtoBrussels.
Willemsfonds is a Brussels-based non-profit organisation that arranges cultural outings. “Film is important to our city,” says Belguenani. “Research shows that cities that appear in big blockbusters see an increase in tourists, from between 25 and 300%.”
‘Write movie history’
The only time Brussels has been mentioned in a James Bond film, says Belguenani, was in For Your Eyes Only, as the place where the bad guy carries out his criminal activities. Here’s how Bond describes him: “The man we want is Emile Leopold Locque, an enforcer in the Brussels underworld. He's been convicted of several particularly brutal murders. He escaped from Namur Prison by strangling his psychiatrist.”
The capital of Europe also has an endless number of great places to shoot a film, and many of them have been used over the last decade in international productions like The Danish Girl, La vie d’Adèle (Blue is the Warmest Colour) Rust and Bone, Kursk and Grace of Monaco. This is in no small part due to the professionalisation of the sector over the last 15 years, including the launch of screen.brussels.
“More and more movies are being shot in Brussels,” says Belguenani, so it’s time to “write movie history” by getting James Bond here. “We call on everyone to post a photo to social media of a place that you find is perfect for James Bond to film,” Belguenani told Radio 2. “And use the hashtag BringBondtoBrussels. Can’t you just imagine James Bond escaping from the balls of the Atomium?”
James could walk in a Brussels restaurant where arms traffickers routinely carry their business, maybe buying from a rotten police commissioner...?