Where Has Everybody Gone?

And "The Living Daylights" DVD is missing too...

The Missing "The Living Daylights" DVD
8th January 2003

At first it looked like a simple marketing slip, but then upon further inspection it became more curious - where had "The Living Daylights" DVD gone? Several online retailers simply issued a "temporarily unavailable" notice and could not confirm the film's certificate.

MGM re-released the 007 special edition DVD series to coincide with the 40th anniversary, but Bond's 15th adventure was nowhere to be seen.

Missing from the Region 2 "Buy Bond Get Bond Free" deal, unavailable as a single film, and missing from the first set released in the USA, fans turned to the Region 2 boxset featuring all 19 DVDs for their Timothy Dalton fix.

MGM have now removed that final option too, as all DVD boxsets have been recalled from online retailers and high-street shops.


(Image courtesy Amazon Associates)

Mystery Solved

Rumours explaining the recall ranged from the Afghanistan location being too sensitive in light of recent events, to industry insiders stating that Sam Neill was objecting to his screentest being featured in the DVD documentary. John Cork, producer of "The Living Daylights" DVD and author of "James Bond - The Legacy" contacted MI6 to put the record straight - and fans minds at rest.

He told MI6, "The DVD was distributed world-wide in 2000 without objection from Neill. An associate producer on the DVDs obtained a release [from him]".

"The real reason that The Living Daylights is not part of the UK release is much more boring."

MI6 has obtained an official statement from MGM Home Entertainment regarding the issue:

The reason the James Bond DVD "The Living Daylights" is not available to purchase as a single disc, yet is available in the James Bond Collection box set, is due to a pending rights issue that we had anticipated would have been resolved before our November DVD release.

However, production timelines meant that we had assembled and packaged the Box Set including "The Living Daylights" in advance of the release, and an interim agreement was reached that we could sell "The Living Daylights" in the Box Set.

We hope to resolve the issue soon and will make "The Living Daylights" available as a single product again as soon as possible.

The negotiations were still taking place when the "Buy Bond Get Bond Free" offer launched in the UK, leading to much confusion among Bond fans about the missing film. MGM Home Entertainment did publish a similar statement to retailers at the time but it failed to filter through.

Although the MGM statement notes an agreement was reached whereby they could ship "The Living Daylights" as part of the box set, this interim agreement by Danjaq (owners of the distribution rights) seems to have been rescinded as box sets have been recalled from retailers in the UK.

There is still no known release date for "The Living Daylights" DVD.

A Rare Breed Indeed

Sealed copies of the DVDs, which could be bought for £16.99 when the disc was originally launched in the summer of 2000, are now changing hands for as much as £340 through online auction sites (although the average TLD DVD is changing hands for around £50).