Mat Whitecross is a busy man. He had to capture the music of the most cosplayed movie and one that has the most captivating music. The producers were ready for it to go out to the public, but some others like Coldplay frontman Chris Martin were not keen on the idea.
It takes two to tango, but the back and forth and approval along with the disapproval from some others changed the course of the documentary. It was easier for the director, but he handled all the retaliation easily and effectively.
While a James Bond film can become outdated, the music remains immortal. The music is, in a sense, the moral code for the viewer. Those early films might be questionable to a modern audience, but the music is so good. Whitecross’s new documentary The Sound of 007 hit Amazon Prime on October 4, 2022, the 60th anniversary of Dr. No, the very first James Bond movie, ever. And the documentary is a must-watch for music fans and Bond fans alike.
When I talked to [Bond producers] Barbara [Broccoli] and Michael [G. Wilson], I told them it might be fun to explore the times when it doesn’t work, and they were very keen on that. We had the story of [Frank] Sinatra, who was supposed to sing ‘Moonraker.’ And then we had the Johnny Cash music up against the Thunderball open credits, but some of it we couldn’t afford, and some of it had to be cut.
Chris Martin recorded a “trunkful” of possible James Bond demos. “Chris is the biggest Bond fan on the planet,” Whitecross explains. “Some of those demos are really good. I asked him if I could use them in this documentary, but he said no. But those demos are actually really amazing.”
Although you won’t find that Coldplay tidbit in The Sound of 007, you will find plenty of other wonderful revelations, including the moment when Johnny Marr — guitar legend from The Smiths and Modest Mouse — comes in to record the iconic Bond guitar solo while Hans Zimmer conducts.
And, if you’re itching for even more cool Bond music, there’s also a new live concert film The Sound of 007: Live From Albert Hall, which awesomely features Hans Zimmer himself playing the guitar to that iconic theme song.
Did you watch the documentary on Amazon Prime yet? Sound off in the comments.