Eilish – whose brooding electropop has captured the world’s ears and earned her six Grammy nominations (including album of the year, record of the year, song of the year and best new artist) for the upcoming awards ceremony – is a fitting pick for the franchise, which tends to favour music with a stately soaring sombreness. (Think: Adele’s Skyfall, which finds the singer’s smoky voice rising from vaguely threatening to victorious and back throughout the tune.)
The theme song – and who will perform it – has become an integral part of each new installment in the Bond franchise, and it often earns the chosen artist accolades if not awards. (Welsh singer Shirley Bassey, who sang Goldfinger, Diamonds Are Forever, and Moonraker is the only musician who has performed more than one.)
Arguably the most enduring song of the bunch is McCartney’s Live and Let Die from the 1973 film of the same name, which was the first to earn an Academy Award nomination (more than a decade after the film series debuted) and reached No. 2 on the Billboard charts. But Duran Duran and John Barry’s eponymous A View to a Kill in 1985 reached a higher peak in its own time, and is the only Bond song to top the charts in the United States.
Carly Simon and Bill Conti both received Oscar noms for their Bond tunes, but the franchise didn’t secure a victory until recently. Only Adele and Sam Smith have won the golden statues for their efforts: her for Skyfall in 2012 and Writing’s on the Wall for 2015’s Spectre, respectively.
In some cases, making a song that isn’t used in the movie can prove to be helpful in its own way. A number of artists recorded songs for the franchise that were never used, which they later repurposed to suit their own needs. Brian Wilson, for example, recorded a song titled Run James Run in hopes it would become a Bond theme. After it was rejected, he transformed it into the instrumental Pet Sounds on the iconic Beach Boys album. He revived the title years later and put out a song called Run James Run on his 2017 compilation album, Playback: The Brian Wilson Anthology.
Johnny Cash’s Thunderball, Alice Cooper’s The Man with the Golden Gun, and Blondie’s For Your Eyes Only were all also originally intended as theme songs – as their titles suggest.
No Time to Die stars Daniel Craig in his final outing as 007, alongside franchise newcomers Lashana Lynch of Captain Marvel fame, Bohemian Rhapsody star Rami Malek and Knives Out breakout Ana de Armas. Cowritten by Fleabag and Killing Eve mastermind Phoebe Waller-Bridge, the highly anticipated sequel hits theatres in April.