‘He isn’t some kid out of high school’: James Bond producer Michael G. Wilson reveals the next 007 will be in his 30s as he rules out younger actors – but insists casting hasn’t started
James Bond producer Michael G. Wilson has revealed that the next 007 spy will likely be an actor in his thirties as he ruled out younger stars for the role.
The screenwriter, 80, who produces the franchise with half-sister Barbara Broccoli, gave an insight into what they are looking for in the next Bond after Daniel Craig’s departure from the role.
Speaking at a Bond event at the British Film Institute on Friday, Michael said they have looked at younger actors for the role in the past but insisted it ‘doesn’t work’.
New era: James Bond producer Michael G. Wilson has revealed that the next 007 spy will likely be an actor in his thirties as he ruled out younger stars for the role
According to Deadline, he said: ‘Remember, Bond’s already a veteran, he’s had some experience. He’s a person who has been through the wars, so to speak.
‘He’s probably been in the SAS or something, he isn’t some kid out of high school that you can bring in and start off – that’s why it works for a thirty-something.’
However, Michael insisted that casting has not yet began to find Daniel’s replacement after he completed his final stint as Bond in No Time To Die last year.
His comments seemingly rule out frontrunners Idris Elba, 50, and Tom Hardy, 45, from being cast as the next 007 agent.
Next Bond: The screenwriter, 80, who produces the franchise with Barbara Broccoli, gave an insight into what they are looking for in Bond after Daniel Craig’s departure
Other actors that have been tipped for the role include Jack O’Connell, 32, Richard Madden, 36, Regé Jean-Page, 34, and Henry Cavill, 39.
It comes after Michael and Barbara said the upcoming movies in the franchise will have bigger roles for women and see a more ’emotional’ side to the 007 spy.
The half-siblings, who produce Bond together, recently spoke about their plans for the franchise following the departure of Daniel.
Barbara, 62, said Daniel, 54, humanised the once-womanising spy and that the character’s ’emotional’ evolution will continue in the next instalment.
Ideal age: Speaking at a Bond event, Michael (pictured with Barbara) said they have looked at younger actors for the role in the past but insisted it ‘doesn’t work’
She also spoke about how recent Bond films have featured larger roles for women, adding that they plan to incorporate meatier female roles in the new movies as well.
‘It’s an evolution,’ she told Variety magazine. ‘Bond is evolving just as men are evolving, I don’t know who’s evolving at a faster pace.’
No Time To Die saw Lashana Lynch play fellow spy Nomi, making history as the first Black female double-O agent.
Speaking about Daniel’s more humanised version of Bond, Barbara – who produces the franchise with her half-brother Michael – said it was the first time the spy was ‘cracked open emotionally’.
Ruled out? His comments seemingly rule out frontrunners Idris Elba, 50, from being cast as the next 007 agent
Could it be? Tom Hardy (right) seems to have been ruled out as he is 45 years old, while Henry Cavill (left), 39, could be in the running
‘The films over [Daniel’s] tenure were the first time we really connected the emotional arc,’ she said.
Barbara and Michael, 80, also touched on their mission to find a new actor to play Bond, after Daniel stepped back from the role following his fifth and final instalment.
The producers insisted they are yet to decide on who will take on the legendary role, explaining that the next 007 movie is still a ‘couple’ of years away at least.
Addressing rumours that Idris Elba is in line for the part, Barbara said they hadn’t been in touch with the Luther actor recently but insisted they ‘love’ him.
Talented: Bookmakers placed Henry at the forefront with 5/2, while Regé Jean-Page (pictured in July 2022) has odds of 4/1
Rumours: Richard Madden, who recently starred in Marvel’s The Eternals, has also been reported to be in consideration for Bond
But they admitted that Idris, 50, may be reluctant to take on such a long commitment, with Michael saying it was hard enough to sign on Daniel when he was in his 30s.
They said there are also similar challenges when considering a much younger actor for the role, saying they need to understand that the part is a very long-term commitment.
Wilson said it is a huge ‘investment’ for Eon Productions to bring out a new Bond, while Broccoli described casting a new 008 as a complete ‘reinvention’.
She said the actor they pick has to be the best fit for their plans for Bond and where they want to take the character in the upcoming films.
Planning: It comes after Barbara and Michael (pictured) spoke about their plans for the franchise following the departure of Daniel Craig as Bond in No Time To Die
Stars including Tom Hardy, Richard Madden and Henry Cavill have also been tipped as front runners to be cast as Bond, after Barbara confirmed the next agent would be a man.
Henry, 39, has been on record for years indicating he’s still interested in the coveted role should an opportunity arise.
He told The Sunday Times in 2021 that ‘time will tell’ if he becomes the latest actor to portray the iconic role, with Daniel Craig exiting the action franchise.
‘You don’t know which direction they want to take Bond in and so I like to say that everything’s always on the table,’ he said.
The Superman star, who was up for the role in 2005 when Daniel was cast, speculated on who could be eyed for the role.
New parts: Barbara also spoke about how recent Bond films have featured larger roles for women, adding that they plan to incorporate meatier female roles in the new movies as well
He told GQ in 2020 that he ‘would absolutely jump at the opportunity’ if it arose, as he ‘would love to play Bond’ and that ‘it would be very, very exciting’.
Another favourite is Regé Jean-Page, who admitted last year that he’s ‘flattered’ to be included among a host of British stars tipped for the iconic role.
He told The Mirror: ‘Ah, the B word. I think that if you are British and you do anything of note, that other people take notice of, then people will start talking about that.’
Despite being the bookies favourite, the Bridgerton star said he was bemused by the idea of making any plans at ‘this moment in history’ and has ‘given up’ doing so.
Barbara – the daughter of original James Bond producer Albert Broccoli – has previously told patient fans they could still be waiting some time for the 26th Eon film as shooting for the next epic is ‘at least two years away’.
Star: No Time To Die saw Lashana Lynch play fellow spy Nomi, making history as the first Black female double-O agent
Speaking at a dinner where she and screenwriter Michael, 80, were awarded BFI fellowships in June, Barbara also hinted at major changes to the character as she said they are ‘reinventing’ the MI6 agent.
According to the Daily Mail’s Richard Eden, she teased: ‘I’d say that filming is at least two years away. It’s a reinvention of Bond.’
She also said she and Michael have not started writing a script for the upcoming 007 film because they want to first make decisions on casting and how they will approach the next instalment.
The half-siblings were handed the reins to Albert Broccoli’s famed Eon Productions in 1995, a year before he passed away at 87 years of age.
Barbara and Michael have been in charge of the 007 franchise ever since, casting both Pierce Brosnan and Daniel Craig through their Bond runs.
It comes after Ian Fleming’s Instagram account teased a special announcement coming up for the franchise. The late writer died in 1964.
Sharing a cryptic post of a retro typewriter, the account under the late writer’s name teased the announcement for October 5, which has officially been dubbed ‘James Bond day’.
‘See you on James Bond Day! #007,’ penned the account, adding eyeball emojis.
The post left fans full of excitement, taking to the comments as one wrote that they were ‘eagerly anticipating’ the news.
Coming soon: Elsewhere, Ian Fleming’s Instagram account teased a special announcement coming up for the franchise
October 5 is also known as James Bond Day for fans of the long-running franchise – as it is the date of the 1962 World Premiere of the first James Bond film.
This day of celebrations first began in 2012 when the Bond films celebrated their golden anniversary – holding events all around the globe.
Elsewhere, Amazon recently acquired MGM, the studio behind Bond, for £6billion and the deal will see the first ever reality TV series based on the franchise.
Bond: 007’s Road to a Million will see contestants follow clues in an epic worldwide race, competing for a £1million cash prize.
Barbara admitted her reluctance to do a TV show for Bond as they didn’t want the contestants to have to do ‘dangerous’ things, but she insisted filming was perfectly safe.
Exit: Barbara and Michael, 80, also said they are in no rush to find a new actor to play Bond, after Daniel stepped back from the role following his fifth and final instalment
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