"Writing's on the Wall" is a song by English singer Sam Smith, written for the release of the 2015 James Bond film Spectre. The song was released as a digital download on 25 September 2015. The song was written by Smith and Jimmy Napes, and produced by the latter alongside Steve Fitzmaurice and Disclosure and released on 25 September 2015.
"Writing's on the Wall" received mixed reviews from critics, some comparing it unfavourably to previous Bond theme songs. The mixed reception to the song led to Shirley Bassey trending on Twitter on the day it was released. Despite this, the single became the first Bond movie theme to reach number one in the UK Singles Chart. It also reached the top 10 in a few other European countries, but unlike other James Bond film themes, it was not as successful outside Europe, only peaking at number 43 in Canada and Australia and number 71 on the Billboard Hot 100. Only the instrumental version of the song appeared on the film's official soundtrack album. The song won the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song at the 73rd Golden Globe Awards and the Academy Award for Best Original Song at the 88th Academy Awards, making it the second consecutive Bond theme to win (after "Skyfall" by Adele in 2012).
Despite being an original story, Spectre draws on Ian Fleming's source material, most notably in the character of Franz Oberhauser, played by Christoph Waltz, and his father Hannes. Hannes Oberhauser is a background character in the short story "Octopussy" from the Octopussy and The Living Daylights collection, and is named in the film as having been a temporary legal guardian of a young Bond in 1983. As Sam Mendes searched for events in young Bond's life to follow the childhood discussed in Skyfall, he came across Hannes Oberhauser, who becomes a father figure to Bond. From there, Mendes conceived the idea of "a natural child who had been pushed out, cuckoo in the nest" by Bond, which became Franz. Similarly, Charmian Bond is shown to have been his full-time guardian, observing the back story established by Fleming.
On 17 May 2015 filming took place on the Thames in London. Stunt scenes involving Craig and Seydoux on a speedboat as well as a low flying helicopter near Westminster Bridge were shot at night, with filming temporarily closing both Westminster and Lambeth Bridges. Scenes were also shot on the river near MI6's headquarters at Vauxhall Cross. The crew returned to the river less than a week later to film scenes solely set on Westminster Bridge. The London Fire Brigade was on set to simulate rain as well as monitor smoke used for filming. Craig, Seydoux, and Waltz, as well as Harris and Fiennes, were seen being filmed. Prior to this, scenes involving Fiennes were shot at a restaurant in Covent Garden. Blofeld's helicopter crash was done with two full sized helicopter shells, which were rigged with steelwork and an overhead track. Computer-generated rotor blades and scenery damage were added in post-production. The MI6 building, which in the film is vacated and scheduled for demolition following the terrorist attack from Skyfall, was replaced in the production plates for a digital reconstruction. When the building is detonated, it is a combination of both a miniature and a breakaway version of the digital building.
In September 2015, Eon announced that Sam Smith had recorded the title theme, "Writing's on the Wall". Smith reported writing the song in a single session with regular collaborator Jimmy Napes in under half an hour before recording a demo. Satisfied with the quality, the filmmakers used the demo in the final release. "Writing's on the Wall" was released as a download on 25 September 2015. It received mixed reviews from critics and fans, particularly in comparison to Adele's "Skyfall", leading to Shirley Bassey trending on Twitter on the day it was released. Despite the mixed reception, it became the first Bond theme to reach number one in the UK Singles Chart, the second to win the Academy Award for Best Original Song, and the fifth to be nominated.[N 6] It also won the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song at the 73rd Golden Globe Awards.
Spectre opened in Germany with $22.5 million (including previews), which included a new record for the biggest Saturday of all time, Australia with $8.7 million (including previews) and South Korea opened to $8.2 million (including previews). Despite the 13 November Paris attacks, which led to numerous theatres being closed down, the film opened with $14.6 million (including $2 million in previews) in France. In Mexico, where part of the film was shot, it debuted with more than double that of Skyfall with $4.5 million. It also bested its predecessor's opening in various Nordic regions where MGM is distributing, such as in Finland ($2.7 million) and Norway ($2.9 million), and in other markets like Denmark ($4.2 million), the Netherlands ($3.4 million), and Sweden ($3.1 million). In India, it opened at No. 1 with $4.8 million which is 4% above the opening of Skyfall. It topped the German-speaking Switzerland box office for four weeks and in the Netherlands, it held the No. 1 spot for seven weeks straight where it topped Minions to become the top movie of the year. The top earning markets are Germany ($70.3 million) and France ($38.8 million). In Paris, it has the second-highest ticket sales of all time with 4.1 million tickets sold only behind Spider-Man 3 which sold over 6.3 million tickets in 2007.
Prior to its UK release, Spectre mostly received positive reviews. Mark Kermode, film critic for The Observer, gave the film four out of five stars, observing that the film did not live up to the standard set by Skyfall, but was able to tap into audience expectations. Writing in The Guardian, Peter Bradshaw gave the film a full five stars, calling it "inventive, intelligent and complex", and singling out Craig's performance as the film's highlight. In another five star review, The Daily Telegraph's Robbie Collin described Spectre as "a swaggering show of confidence'", lauding it as "a feat of pure cinematic necromancy." Positive yet critical assessments included Kim Newman of Sight and Sound, who wrote that "for all its wayward plotting (including an unhelpful tie-in with Bond's childhood that makes very little sense) and off-the-peg elements, Spectre works" as he felt "the audience's patience gets tested by two and a half hours of set-pieces strung on one of the series' thinner plots"; and IGN's Chris Tilly, who rated the film 7.2 out of 10, considering Spectre "solid if unspectacular", and concluding that "the film falls frustratingly short of greatness."
Critical appraisal was mixed in the United States. In a review for RogerEbert.com, Matt Zoller Seitz gave Spectre 2.5 out of 4, describing it as inconsistent and unable to capitalise on its potential. Kenneth Turan, reviewing the film for Los Angeles Times, concluded that Spectre "comes off as exhausted and uninspired". Manohla Dargis of The New York Times criticised the film as having "nothing surprising" and sacrificing its originality for the sake of box office returns. Forbes' Scott Mendelson also heavily criticised the film, denouncing Spectre as "the worst 007 movie in 30 years". Darren Franich of Entertainment Weekly viewed Spectre as "an overreaction to our current blockbuster moment", aspiring "to be a serialized sequel" and proving "itself as a Saga". While noting that "[n]othing that happens in Spectre holds up to even minor logical scrutiny", he had "come not to bury Spectre, but to weirdly praise it. Because the final act of the movie is so strange, so willfully obtuse, that it deserves extra attention." Christopher Orr, writing in The Atlantic, also criticised the film, saying that Spectre "backslides on virtually every [aspect]". Lawrence Toppman of The Charlotte Observer called Craig's performance "Bored, James Bored." Alyssa Rosenberg, writing for The Washington Post, stated that the film turned into "a disappointingly conventional Bond film."
"Writing's on the Wall" is a song by British singer Sam Smith. It was the theme song for the James Bond movie Spectre in 2015. The song was released as a digital download on 25 September 2015. The song was written by Smith and Jimmy Napes, and produced by Napes, Steve Fitzmaurice and Disclosure. It was released on 25 September 2015. 2b1af7f3a8