How Sam Smith Wrote James Bond SPECTRE Theme Without Seeing the Film

How did Sam Smith pen a song about a film he hadn't seen? He explains.

By Staff

As the singer and co-writer of “Writing’s on the Wall,” the theme song to the  new James Bond film, SPECTRE, one would assume Sam Smith would have watched the film weeks or months ago. But when asked to see it by director Sam Mendes, Smith declined in favor of attending the London premiere with his family, which finally happened Monday night.

So, how did Smith pen a song about a film he hadn’t seen?

Related: Sam Smith to Rekindle Relationships, Kiss People, Work on New Album

While speaking with backstage last weekend at We Can Survive, Smith explained that he’d been well briefed on the film by Mendes and Barbara [Broccoli], the late Albert Broccoli’s daughter. Broccoli produced the majority of the Bond films.

“I got given the script and I sat with Barbara [Broccoli] and Sam Mendes and I know everything about the film—everything’s that gonna happen—cause it’s so important—when you see the song in the beginning of the film it makes sense.”

“I tried to put myself in the shoes of Bond,” Smith told NPR in September. “My music is a diary and it’s a recap of my life, and I wanted to bring that kind of honesty. In the lyrics—”How do I live, how do I breathe? / When you’re not here I’m suffocating”—I wanted a touch of vulnerability from Bond, where you see into his heart a little bit.”

James Bond SPECTRE opens November 6.


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