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James Bond Producer Says Idris Elba Has ‘Been Part of the Conversation’ for Next 007

Longtime Bond producer Barbara Broccoli called Elba "a magnificent actor."

Idris Elba poses for photographers upon arrival at the opening of the London film festival and the World premiere of the film 'The Harder They Fall' in London Wednesday, Oct. 6, 2021. (Photo by Joel C Ryan/Invision/AP)

Idris Elba

Joel C Ryan/Invision/AP

2021’s “No Time To Die” marked Daniel Craig’s fifth time playing James Bond, as well as his final appearance as the iconic secret agent, which means one of Hollywood’s most coveted roles is vacant again for the first time in nearly two decades. Daniel Craig’s long tenure as the character, combined with his tendency to frequently announce retirement plans before changing his mind, caused Bond fans to spend much of the last decade speculating about his potential replacement. And in recent years, one name has reigned supreme: Idris Elba. The “Luther” star has been a fan favorite to take up the 007 mantle for quite some time, and it now appears that the franchise’s producers are taking notice.

Speaking on a Deadline podcast this week, longtime Bond producer Barbara Broccoli had nothing but good things to say about Idris Elba. “We know Idris, I’m friends with him,” she said. “He’s a magnificent actor.” However, she made sure to remain noncommittal about any potential casting and said that any conversations up to this point have been purely hypothetical. While fans have been speculating about Daniel Craig’s replacement for years, the producer did not want to begin work on her next casting search until he had officially departed. “You know, [Elba has] been part of the conversation, but it’s always difficult to have a conversation when you have somebody in the seat,” she said. 

Craig’s tenure as James Bond was a highly successful one, as the actor is credited with injecting life into a franchise that was becoming increasingly goofy and obsolete. If the James Bond producers want to keep his momentum going, they need to nail the next casting. Barbara Broccoli said she knows that and appears to be in no rush to start a formal casting process.

“I think we have decided that until ‘No Time to Die’ has had its run, and Daniel has been able to– well, we’ve all been able to savor, reap the benefits of Daniel’s wonderful tenure, we’re not going to think about, or talk about, anybody else, actors to play the role, or storylines, or anything really,” she said. “We just want to live in the moment.”

But Hollywood’s biggest franchises move fast, and at some point soon, Broccoli will have to choose the next 007. One thing is for certain: Until an announcement is made, Idris Elba will continue to be at the heart of all James Bond rumors.

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