Theatrical release: November 19, 1999.
Shot on location in Azerbaijan, Turkey, the French Alps, and Spain.
THE WORLD IS NOT ENOUGH grossed nearly $127 million at the domestic box office and more than $350 million worldwide.
Pierce Brosnan wanted Apted to direct because Brosnan wanted to work with more challenging material. One thing that Apted tried to do was to get M more involved in the story. Apted also wanted the the villain to display more vulnerability and be more sympathetic than the typical Bond nemesis. At one point Apted considered having Bond talk about his personal history to Elektra King. However, the producers nixed the idea, explaining that one of the characteristics of Bond is that he never talks about himself.
After working to make the female characters (M, Elektra, and Christmas Jones) more three-dimensional, Apted brought in coscreenwriter Bruce Feirstein (author of the books REAL MEN DON'T EAT QUICHE and NICE GUYS SLEEP ALONE) to add some of the more typical macho elements to the film.
Employing up to three units operating simultaneously, THE WORLD IS NOT ENOUGH is the biggest production Apted has had to manage, as well as the highest budgeted (it was three times that of EXTREME MEASURES).
The Bond franchise has been going on for about as long as Apted's SEVEN UP series, making Apted a contributor to two of the longest running film projects in history.
Many of the principal crew members have worked on Bond films before, ensuring continuity between each film. Bruce Feirstein has worked on 3 previous projects; production designer Peter Lamont, 15; stunt coordinator Simon Crane, 3; costume designer Lindy Hemming, 2; casting director Debbie McWilliams, 6; special effects supervisor Chris Corbould, 8; miniature effects supervisor John Richardson, 6; and music composer David Arnold, 1.
THE WORLD IS NOT ENOUGH is the 15th Bond film to be shot at Pinewood Studios in England.
Desmond Llewelyn, the only actor who has portrayed Q, died at the age of 85 in a car crash on December 19, 1999. Ever since GOLDEN EYE, Llewelyn had been talking about a way for his character to make a graceful exit from the Bond films. Coscreenwriter Bruce Feirstein explained in SALON, "It became sort of a running joke: Whenever we left a restaurant, he'd stuff a 10- or 12-page handwritten sequence into my pocket, each one detailing a new, ever more elaborate exit for his character." An option for Q to retire was finally included in THE WORLD IS NOT ENOUGH, with the producers and screenwriters not realizing that Llewelyn would pass away just one month after the film's release.
Maria Grazia Cucinotta (IL POSTINO) originally wanted the role of Elektra, but Apted didn't think her English was strong enough. She convinced him to cast her in a smaller part, the cigar woman.
Robbie Coltrane makes a return appearance as Valentin Zukovsky, one of the few villains to ever reappear in the Bond series. He first appeared in GOLDENEYE.
Producer Michael Wilson appears in the casino scene, opening the door for Bond and Elektra.