The search for the next James Bond is still in its “early days,” according to long-time 007 producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson, who say they “still have to pitch prospective actors on the part.” Speaking with Variety, finding the new Bond is a lot more difficult than it might seem, with the franchise needing an actor able to commit to a decade of espionage outings.
“The thing is, it’s going to be a couple of years off. And when we cast Bond, it’s a 10-, 12-year commitment. So he’s probably thinking, ‘Do I really want that thing? Not everybody wants to do that. It was hard enough getting [Daniel Craig to do it].”
“And he was in his early 30s at the time!” Wilson adds.
According to Broccoli, while many young actors may think they want to be the next actor to slip into the iconic tuxedo, there is a lot more to playing James Bond than you might expect.
“A lot of people think, ‘Oh yeah, it’d be fun to do one. Well. That ain’t gonna work.”
Ultimately for Broccoli and Wilson, the top choice comes down to who can reinvent James Bond in the most interesting way. An element that makes the casting decision a lot more complicated.
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“That’s why, when people go, ‘Oh, who are you going to get?’ it’s not just about casting an actor for a film. It’s about a reinvention, and ‘Where are we taking it? What do we want to do with the character?’ And then, once we figure that out, who’s the right person for that particular reinvention?”
According to Broccoli, even Daniel Craig, who was eager to do it and “be a part of it, the whole thing” came to “regret” his decision due to the long-term commitment required. “But it’s a big commitment. It’s not just showing up for a couple of months of filming,” she adds.
James Bond Will Continue to Evolve Beyond the Daniel Craig Era
Much like the Daniel Craig era did, the next iteration of James Bond will take its cues from both modern action movies and modern men. Broccoli notes how Craig’s version “cracked Bond open emotionally,” adding that “his tenure were the first time we really connected the emotional arc.” With the character continuing to evolve, Broccoli and Wilson need to find the best actor to portray that evolution.
“It’s an evolution. Bond is evolving just as men are evolving. I don’t know who’s evolving at a faster pace.”
Names such as Henry Cavill, Tom Hardy, Idris Elba, Aidan Turner, and Regé-Jean Page are often on top of fan-casting lists for the next James Bond. No doubt that Broccoli and Wilson already know this. But are any of these actors on their radar as someone who can both commit to the franchise and successfully reinvent the character? And is there any truth to the latest rumor that they are looking to cast a much younger actor than expected? Well, you may want to pour yourself a rather large Vesper Martini, as we may be waiting a while to find out.