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Adele, Lady Gaga? How Sam Smith Won The Bond Theme War...

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The selection process tends to go for British artists with buzz.

The Bond song contest is played out behind a secret-service wall of top security. Every leak, hint and tweet is watched by artists, fans, journalists and the entertainment industry. Adele showed why this matters with “Skyfall” in 2012. Her bold, brassy ballad topped the charts in a dozen countries and sold more than five million copies worldwide. It also won the first Academy Award for a Bond film in nearly 50 years. (The previous Oscars were for best visual or sound effects). The interest generated also boosted sales of Adele’s XL album21 by about 10%, according to record company estimates.

The official line with all Bond themes has always been that the franchise considers all artists and of course selects only the very best, those it names.

The choice of Smith makes sense in that producer Barbara Broccoli and director Sam Mendes tend to go for talked-about artists whose sales are riding high. There has been a preference for British acts, with James Bond being a Brit of course, but the chosen singer also has to be well-known in the U.S. After many female artists and groups, Smith is the first British solo male singer picked since 1965, when Tom Jones belted out “Thunderball.”

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