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Judi Dench Says This Can Be The New James Bond

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In 2006, actor Daniel Craig took over as James Bond in Casino Royale. With 2020’s No Time to Die, he’ll be portraying the character for the final time. When it comes to who can take over, Judi Dench has a perfect replacement in mind.

Trading Luther For Bond

While on The Graham Norton Show, Dench spoke about rumors of Idris Elba playing Bond. While shooting Cats, Dench decided to tease the actor about being the iconic agent. ‘”I knew he was up for it, and in Cats, I had the line to him, “You’ll never get to Heaviside Layer,” but during rehearsals. I said, “you’ll never get to MI6,” Dench said on the show. Dench, who plays M in the Bond series, believes Elba can become the new Bond. “I think he might,” Dench also said on the show.

Can it Happen?

With five Emmy nominations, Elba is one of England’s most beloved actors. The Elba/Bond rumors began with the 2014 Sony email leak, which suggested him for the role. Elba has talked about taking the role for years. “It is the wildest rumor in the world. I keep saying if it were to happen it would be the will of a nation because there hasn’t been any talks between me and the studio about any of that,” Elba said on Good Morning America in 2016. “But everywhere I go, people have been wanting that to happen. But if I’m really honest, man, I think I’m too old for that. Running around in cars and ladies and martinis, who wants to do that? Sounds terrible.”

While Elba believes he’s too old, this isn’t the case. Craig is four years older than Elba. This could be Elba simply joking about taking such an iconic role.

Will Fans Accept Him?

One thing Elba fears is his obvious appearance turning off longtime fans of the franchise. “You just get disheartened when you get people from a generational point of view going, ‘It can’t be.’ And it really turns out to be the color of my skin,” he told Vanity Fair. “And then if I get it and it didn’t work, or it did work, would it be because of the color of my skin? That’s a difficult position to put myself into when I don’t need to.”

Over the years, many established characters have swapped skin color to raving reviews. This is mainly prevalent in comic book movies. In the DC Extended Universe, Will Smith and Laurence Fishburne respectively portrayed Deadshot and Perry White. In the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Elba portrayed Heimdall.

Bond, James Bond

Despite the possible backlash, Elba would love to fill Craig’s shoes. “James Bond is a hugely coveted, iconic, beloved character, that takes audiences on this massive escapism journey,” Elba also told Vanity Fair. “Of course, if someone said to me ‘Do you want to play James Bond?,’ I’d be like, Yeah! That’s fascinating to me. But it’s not something I’ve expressed, like, Yeah, I wanna be the black James Bond.”

Craig feels anyone should be able to portray Bond. “I think that everybody should be considered. For women and for African Americans, there should be great parts anyway, across the board. It shouldn’t have to be Bond that takes … it doesn’t need to be Bond. It just needs to be written — some good parts,” Craig told Entertainment Tonight. In No Time To Die, Lashana Lynch takes over Bond’s spot as the new 00 agent. Bond comes out of retirement to aid a longtime friend.

For now, everyone has their ears out for who’ll take over in the new era of Bond.

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