The 22 previous James Bond films have seen six actors play the title character and ten different car brands piloted by the MI6 spy. But one facet that has remained since the beginning of the franchise is Mr. Bond’s signature drink: a vodka martini, “shaken, not stirred.” But for the 23rd installment, Skyfall, Bond will sip on a less potent potable. He’ll be drinking a Heineken.
Thanks to a product placement deal with the Dutch brewer, at least one scene in the new film will see Daniel Craig requesting a Heineken from behind the bar. The brand, according to AdAge, has had a partnership with the film for 15 years, but this is the beermaker’s most major attempt to capitalize on the Bond name. While it’s unlikely that he’ll keep returning to the bar for Heineken after Heineken, the mere fact that Bond is ordering a beer should turn heads. For the Bond franchise, it’s a marked change of plot.
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The company will pair the movie name-drop with an international ad campaign also starring Craig. The ad boom is a strong-armed attempt for the Amsterdam-based brewer to keep up with the king of import beers, Corona, which prides itself on its collegiate beachfront advertisements. Taking the suave route, though, Heineken will play off the professionalism and sophistication of James Bond to craft an image of their beer. He is the “epitome of the man of the world,” Heineken’s chief marketing officer Leysa Lysyj told AdAge in announcing the partnership. Skyfall’s director, Sam Mendes, will serve as a creative consultant for the ad campaign, so we should most certainly expect a theatrical feel to the ads.
Despite Heineken’s optimism, some fans can’t seem to calmly drink in the change. Yahoo notes that many loyal Bond watchers are up in arms that Heineken could force such a major script change. The backlash was just as strong when Bond switched his classic Aston Martin for a BMW in Goldeneye. Though his bar tab will hardly affect the movie’s plot – unless he drinks one too many, gains a beer belly, and can no longer outpace the bad guys.
Above all, let’s just hope he doesn’t fall into old habits and ask for this drink shaken.