Is it really possible to make a passive form of the sentence

They've just finished filming the new James Bond film.?

The key says that the passive for it is The new James Bond film has just finished being filmed. But I don't quite understand both the grammar and the meaning of that sentence.

Can I just say The new James Bond film has just been finished?

If yes, I don't understand where the word filming or its other form goes?

Thanks in advance:)

  • "filming the new James bond" comes from the fact that "to finish" licenses present participle.
    – Cardinal
    Apr 19, 2018 at 15:27
  • Also what do you mean by "how something can finish itself?" To my learner eyes, that being filmed, looks odd.
    – Cardinal
    Apr 19, 2018 at 15:29
  • Thanks for your comments. That was my bad with "How can the film..." But still, could you, please, tell me how to make passives with that type of sentences? Apr 19, 2018 at 17:54

2 Answers 2


"Filming" is being used as part of a noun phrase here. Let's ignore the rest of that phrase (i.e., "the new James Bond film"):

They've just finished filming.

Cambridge Dictionary defines filming as "the activity of making a film". However, you could get more strict and define filming to be the process of shooting the scenes by camera. For example, the sound mixing may not have been completed yet.

The passive of my truncated sentence would be:

(The) Filming has just been finished (by them).

Let's restore the full noun phrase and remove the optional parts in parentheses:

Filming the new James Bond movie has just been finished.

You may find native speakers squeeze in a "of" after "filming", but this is optional here and doesn't change the meaning in anyway.

Filming of the new James Bond movie has just been finished.

The verb whose voice you are changing from active to passive is "to finish", not "to film", because "filming" is being used as a gerund in a noun phrase.

  • The solution is so simple, who would have thought. Apr 20, 2018 at 11:29
  • Thanks a lot:) Finally, I got it. May I ask you to explain the grammar of the sentence “The new Janes Bond film has just been finished filming”? What is its structure and can I apply it in similar sentences with Gerund? Apr 20, 2018 at 11:30
  • 1
    "The new James Bond movie has just been finished filming," doesn't seem like a sound sentence to me. You can either say, "The movie has just been finished," or you can say, "The movie has just been filmed." If you wanted to talk about filming alone, you would say "The filming of the movie has just been finished." If you want to use filming as a noun, put it with the subject. If you want to use it as a verb, don't use the verb "finish" as well.
    – urnonav
    Apr 20, 2018 at 14:55
  • That’s very helpful:) Thank you again, you made it clear to me. Apr 21, 2018 at 15:53

My argument is that you understand the applicable English perfectly but you don't understand film-making, and that's giving you doubts about your English.

You can say that *The new James Bond film as been finished", because depending on your audience, most people will understand that to mean that it's ready for distribution. But that is not what you intend, it seems. There's a big gap between the end of filming and the subsequent effort required to make a finished product ready for distribution. It's not finished until all that is done.

You can say "The new James Bond film has just finished being filmed. This would be true before the contribution of special effects, etc.

  • Yes, I see your point and understood that something was strange with my sentence. That’s why I asked for your comments, actually:) Thank you. Apr 20, 2018 at 11:38

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