Could Idris Elba be the next James Bond?

Naomie Harris hints at future casting

While Daniel Craig is still in line to don the tuxedo for a couple more outings yet, there will always be rumours surrounding his eventual replacement.

One of the names who keeps cropping up is Idris Elba, with many people feeling that it’s only a matter of time before we get a black Bond (although the way Colin Salmon is carrying on on Strictly, you’d think we’d already had one!)

Now, Skyfallstar Naomie Harris has had her say on the matter, and reveals that Elba has already met with producer Barbara Broccoli to discuss the possibility.

“I didn't realise that there was this talk and then I did a film with Idris and he said that he met Barbara Broccoli and that it does seem like there is a possibility in the future that there could very well be a black James Bond," says Harris.

"And I would have to vote for Idris because I just finished working with him and he's a great guy." Intriguing stuff, although we’d say there’s plenty of life in Daniel Craig for a while to come. Skyfall opens in UK cinemas on Friday.

Read our Skyfall review, and get involved in our Bond Fortnight.

Would Elba make a good Bond? Tell us, below!

Comments

    • carlos79

      Oct 25th 2012, 9:40

      Elba is 40 years old - Daniel Craig is 44 years old - DC still has 2 films left in his contract as Bond with the possibility of a third . . . Elba will never be Bond. Not against a Black Bond, cold bring something different to the character - and as much as I like Elba in movies, it just won't work out. Surely Total Film can work out their ages and realise it won't happen!

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    • DAZNOZ

      Oct 25th 2012, 9:50

      Totally agree with carlos79. He will be too old when DC leaves the role. If Bond 24/25 are made two years apart and thats a big if, Elba will be 45 when he starts filming the role or even coming up to 48 if the gap is three years. Surely FB should see this is as a non starter.

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    • mbarn1

      Oct 25th 2012, 9:51

      i

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    • mbarn1

      Oct 25th 2012, 9:56

      I know there has been talk of this for a while and I know this comes across a bit, well more than a bit racist. But i dont think it makes sense for there to be a black Bond(simply because the character isn't black), if so when are we going to have our first white Shaft?

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    • FBALeal

      Oct 25th 2012, 10:11

      Why does TF have to be the one "working it out"? They are only reporting on a rumour. To be honest, I am thinking about a replacement to Daniel Craig (please, type the whole name lads, initials look lazy). I am against the idea of a black Bond just cause it could be cool or whatever. Should Blade be white too? Come one, it would an unecessary move. Now, let's enjoy Craig. He is nowhere near done with 007.

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    • DAZNOZ

      Oct 25th 2012, 10:12

      mbarn1 is your going with that line then M was always male in Fleming's novels.

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    • DAZNOZ

      Oct 25th 2012, 10:21

      FBALeal where does anyone use the words "working it out". Please don't quote phrases thatt don't exist. If I want to use intials for Daniel Craig I will thank you.

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    • mbarn1

      Oct 25th 2012, 10:42

      I take your point DAZNOZ but M isnt the main character of the book, he is a supporting character and changes are usually/not always accepted when it comes to the supporting character when adapted into a film. The point (and i have to be careful here) that i'm trying to make is that (some)people think in our modern world isnt it time for there to be a black bond and i dont think that there has to be for progress to occur. If this was the case then why not have a female bond next time isnt the world ready for a female bond?

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    • sgtpluck

      Oct 25th 2012, 11:00

      Hey - if Stallone can still carry off Rambo in his 60s, I'm sure Elba can carry Bond off in his mid-late 40s!

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    • chrisfinney

      Oct 25th 2012, 11:07

      Michael Fassbender. That is all.

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    • Mings

      Oct 25th 2012, 11:09

      James Bond is white. That's not racism in action, it just happens to be the case, Meanwhile, the characters of both 'M' and Q' are codenamed designations, meaning that either could be male, female. white, black or martian. There is literally zero point in making the character of James Bond black. Barack Obama being elected leader of the free world could be considered a demonstration of how far race relations have come, specifically within the U.S of course. Making James Bond black doesn't demonstrate anything, would make no narrative sense and would seem more like a forced PR or marketing exercise and nothing more.

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    • spoonlamp

      Oct 25th 2012, 11:15

      Bond is only white because he's always been white. The books have never been anything more than a template or skeleton to hang the films on. The age thing may be an issue though. While it's easy to write a Bond story where he's a little older it would help if it was with an actor already established in the role. But isn't Elba a bit big for Bond? I should go and watch the series he's in ...

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    • Mings

      Oct 25th 2012, 11:25

      Agreed spoonlamp. My point is that there is literally no point in changing the colour of the character other than to make a big deal our of the fact they've changed the colour of the character. It would be kind of patronizing to me in a weird way.

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    • mbarn1

      Oct 25th 2012, 11:27

      I think if they're going to change the franchise again why not do it like this "a young plucky recruit, rising through the ranks of MI5 but yet once he reaches his double O status, he just finds it so hard to fit in with his care free and vivacious attitude. some people will think he's dumb at the start but towards the end he will prove that he is Legally Bond" could star reese witherspoon as M

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    • FBALeal

      Oct 25th 2012, 11:28

      I think that people (or studios, whoever) mistake change for progress. Having a black 007 isn't progress, it's just a random pointless change. It's more political correctness than anything. If it's really progress they were after, they would have Bond to be Asian or Latino or Indian. Why not take Mr. Miyagi and make him white? Sounds ridiculous? Well of course it is. Because it brings nothing to the character or story having him to be of different skin colour. Progress, real progress in 007, is having modern vilains and issues tackled in the story. Which seems like is happening in Skyfall (from what I can see). That's my take on it.

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    • MoodyMonkey

      Oct 25th 2012, 11:50

      His age sadly means this wont likely happen (the producers would be thinking of getting at least 4 movies from their lead) and this is kind of a meaningless debate. Elba's race should not make a difference, at all, but because he would be labelled the 'black Bond', then he has said he wouldn't take the role for that reason alone which is depressing to say the least. Skin colour should mean naff all if he's the right actor, which in a parallel 'Craig-less' universe, he would be.

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    • Joker88

      Oct 25th 2012, 12:01

      I totally agree with FBALeal

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    • RaveyDaveyGravy

      Oct 25th 2012, 12:01

      I agree that his age rather than his skin will stop Elba. Personally I dont care if a black actor gets the role, for me its about the actor and what he brings to the roll and thats why DC (:D) is perfect. Think about it. IE (:D) is a brick s**te house and a brilliant brooding screen presence, he could be brilliant! CS (sorry cant help it) is a bit camp for me.

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    • LongDown

      Oct 25th 2012, 12:27

      Bond was always a bit of an outsider, both of the establishment and yet not of it. I don't think that it matters that he was white in the books, they were written a long time ago. Heck, some people would have said that Bond was English, and yet he's been played by a Scotsman and an Australian. . . Unfortunately, some of the territories Bond has traditionally operated in can still be considered racist and a black face would stand out for a 'secret agent' - witness the recent controversy over abuse handed out to the England football team playing in the Ukraine (the new Felix Leiter gets away with it, though). However, Bond has had many adventures in Africa, Europe, the USA, the Caribbean, and South America too. Also, Bond has always been 'international', much of the escapism of the postwar novels was in the exotic locations, fine food, and casinos, where the worlds rich gathered, where race doesn't matter as long as you have the money. . . But I suspect Mr Elba is too old to take over from Mr Craig.

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    • FBJRider

      Oct 25th 2012, 12:47

      Elba is a great actor and he'd be great in a Bond style flick but do we honestly need a black Bond? It wouldn't do anything for the franchise, the only reason for it would be to keep it PC. For some reason these days if you don't use a minority you're racist. I guess they'll make Bond female next so they don't look sexist.

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    • mattburgess

      Oct 25th 2012, 13:01

      Apparently, some people believe the world cannot be considered politically correct until every white thing has been made black, and every black thing has been made white. That way everybody will have shown we're all okay with it. Urgh...

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    • mbarn1

      Oct 25th 2012, 13:07

      I really want to see a serious take on Shaft being white then we will all be living in harmony

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    • writerdave87

      Oct 25th 2012, 13:25

      Who's the white private dick that's a sex machine to all the chicks...

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    • therealeverton

      Oct 25th 2012, 13:27

      I love the way people blurt out replies without thinking. Shaft is defined almost entirely by his colour; James Bond is virtually NOTHING to do with his colour. His Being British (English really, but that hasn't been bothered about) is the central point, his colour is an irrelevance. His skin colour defines not a single part of his character, background or behaviour. With the cold war long gone and any Bond effectively "born" in 1970 or after, there is nothing that means he has to be white, not a thing. There are characters whose colour / ethnicity / sexuality matters, Shaft, Tarzan, DCI Tennison, Vito Corleone, Black Widow and there are those where it makes #NO difference, Nick Fury, James Bond, Captain Marvel (Ms. Marvel). Everything can't be dismissed as PC and blamed on PC... I won't even get into the simple fact that you also can't compare like for like as all things are not equal. (This is not a political correctness move on the part of the Bond producers,, it is, perhaps, a recognition, Danny Boyle style, of what Britain actually looks like now.) More to the point for historical reasons there are far, far more white characters established than non white ones. In other words if you take a white character and make them Asian or black, you've "lost" 1 of hundreds of leading white roles that year. You change a black character to a white guy you're changing one of a handful to ad to a list that is already overflowing. If you have to bring PC into it, then you should look at that simple mathematics. Does it suck to be "suffering" the consequences of 100s of years of white domination? Let's be serious here eh. Please no more Shaft references, it simply isn't logical.

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    • mbarn1

      Oct 25th 2012, 13:37

      How is Shaft defined by his colour? Does blackness have a definition besides skin colour? I'm not being smart just wondering what you(the realeverton) think this definition is?

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    • anthony8679

      Oct 25th 2012, 13:42

      I heard he doesn't want to do it just because he doesn't want to be referred to as "The Black Bond" for the rest of his career.

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    • anthony8679

      Oct 25th 2012, 13:43

      And mbarn, coming from a black guy, you have all the permission in the world to make Shaft white. We really don't care about him that much

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    • MoodyMonkey

      Oct 25th 2012, 13:50

      To anyone who does not think Shaft is defined by his skin color, watch the original film again - please.

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    • GarthMarenghi

      Oct 25th 2012, 13:54

      Idris as Bond over creepy old Fassbender any day of the week! But yes, the age is an issue. I'm sure he could handle the action into his fifties, but that doesn't give him very long in the role once Craig retires. A shame.

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    • MoodyMonkey

      Oct 25th 2012, 13:55

      my above comment might be a bit snarky...but seriously Shaft the character endures racist abuse in the movie and for his time is a hero to many young black people. the character is almost totally defined by his skin colour. The films are as much about his struggles against a racist system as much as his exploits as a Private Eye.

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    • therealeverton

      Oct 25th 2012, 14:11

      @ mbarn1 Whilst I'm tempted to simply agree with MoodyMonkey and suggest that you watch the original film and / or read up on it... I'm genuinely bemused by the question. The whole point of Shaft, even if you ignore the Blaxploitation movie element, is that he is a black person standing up for black people, against a system that is, both in the film and inthe country at the time, perceived to be stacked against black people and in favour of white people. Both the major crime, the police and the justice system. That is also backed up by the history of slavery, persecution and the civil rigts movements in America, again at the time and only a few years before the film was made.Wherein school children were attacked y the police for trying to go to school with white children and so on. Honestly there's so much background to Shaft and his being black that this could go on for pages. As I say above there are characters, of all colours and both sexes and sexualities, that are interchangeable and there are those that are not. To use an example of character who has, in a roundabout sort of way, gone through this change. To the overwhelming majority of people Nick Fury is a black guy who looks and sounds like Samuel L Jackson. However the original Nick Fury was a white guy.When the Ultimate Marvel comics were being created the "parallel Universe" version of Fury was made black. When Stan Lee helped create Marvel Nick Fury he wanted a super cool sy. Well in the 1960s with The Man From U.NC.L.E and Bond the cool spy was a white guy in his late 30s /early 40s so he re-used Nick Fury from the WWII comics. When Mark Millar was coming up with the "cool guy" he thought the cool guy would be a black guy, later he got permission to have the character be drawn to look like Jackson and even modified his speech and mannerisms to fit that "iconic" Samuel L Jackson. But the prime factor here was not too old, not too young and very cool. Fury's colour did not matter and the fact is now, most people don't know he was ever white (technically that was a different Fury) and hardly anyone cares. Lister from Red Dwarf was white, but Craig Charles got the part and he is black, who cares? So Lister could be a white guy and it wouldn't change a thing about him, well except for his locks of course. I hope that helps...

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    • therealeverton

      Oct 25th 2012, 14:18

      @ Mbam The film was made in 1971, jut 7 years after non-white Americans were legally allowed to send to their kids to the same schools as white children; just 7 years after they were given the same rights in the law as white people. The film is very specifically about a man defending black people's rights from both white crime bosses AND the law. It is a time where black people were not protected, even though the laws of the land had been specifically changed to say that they should be. People getting ready to leave school for college were young enough to have had dogs set on them BY THE POLICE for trying to go to school. It was a blaxploitation film (surely enough on its own to suggest that he has to be black and is defined by his colour) The film deals directly with racist incidents. Honestly there's pages worth of reasons and you are probably better off finding one of the books / passages written about it, or looking up the original reviews. I did think you were just being Facetious , but then I thought you were probably genuine so I hope that answers your question...

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    • therealeverton

      Oct 25th 2012, 14:37

      Sorry, I thought the first post got lost ... Also I did write about this yesterday... therealeverton.blogspot dot co dot uk/2012/10/james-bond-could-idris-elba-be-first.html

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    • tinadee

      Oct 25th 2012, 14:43

      Look at these racist comments here.

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    • seanchandler

      Oct 25th 2012, 14:54

      @mbarn1 The character of Shaft is rooted in black subculture and the plots of the movies deal explicitly with racism (even in the remake the villain was a racist). The character of James Bond has always been white, but he's never been tied to a uniquely white sub-culture. Perhaps there's a different example you could give that might convince me, but there IS a huge difference between making James Bond black and making Shaft white.

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    • FBALeal

      Oct 25th 2012, 15:39

      We have to admit, after all has been said, if the production team of 007 is indeed thinking about a black Bond, no can deny the boldness of the move. And I for one, admire that.

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    • DAZNOZ

      Oct 25th 2012, 18:21

      In the end it does not matter who plays Bond, as long as the role is treated with the respect it deserves. Which thankfully at the moment it is.

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    • jaykays hat

      Oct 25th 2012, 18:24

      Bond....James Bond...ya get me!!

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    • Ali1748

      Oct 25th 2012, 18:37

      Elba will be a bit old by the time Daniel finishes but Chiwetel Ejiofor on the other hand will just be coming up for 40. He's a solid actor and is charming enough to pull off the role, his name is a tongue twister though.

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    • maroade

      Oct 25th 2012, 18:56

      The argument of age is not relevant Sean Connery first appearance as bond was age 32 his last appearance was 53 Roger Moore was 45 when he first appeared as bond and 57 for his last appearance Timothy Dalton was 41 in his first appearance Pierce Brosnan was 42 for his first appearance and 49 for his last The argument over age and weather Daniel Craig will continue is up in the air, Skyfall will be his third bond movie and I think his last. I didn't hear any complaints from fans about Craig being a blond actor whilst all the other Bonds have had black hair. If you really have a problem with a fictional character who has been around since 1962 still fighting bad guys in 2012 you really need to re-evaluate what the real problem is here. It's because Idris is black and it would make you feel uncomfortable that Idris is able to play a character who is white and that he is not playing a stereotypical african warlord in a bond movie. I've been going on the premises that the change Bond all the time because the character gets discharged, and they bring in another agent to take the place of the best in the business, made clear by a blond James Bond. As much as I love the Bond movies If Idris can play the suave spy then I think he should. Also Michael Fassbender is German which disqualifies him as Bond is traditionally British.

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    • Ali1748

      Oct 25th 2012, 19:06

      Fassbender is part Irish so that qualifies him and they don't need to be British as Sam Neil came close to playing bond.

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    • Hadouken76

      Oct 25th 2012, 19:07

      Traditionally British? Tell that to George Lazenby.

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    • smellyhands

      Oct 25th 2012, 19:54

      That being British argument really annoys me. They are actors playing fictional characters. If they can pull off an English accent all is fine. Although trying to get Sean Connery to alter his Scottish accent for any role is a fools errand. Also in no way is Bonds skin colour ever a factor in any of the Bond films. Who cares what colour he is as long as the actor can portray his character the way the director wants.

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    • NichoiliB

      Oct 25th 2012, 20:53

      therealeverton Bond is half Scottish and half swiss not English as you claim. Someone else even commented "heck he's been played by a Scotman" like it was strange.

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    • therealeverton

      Oct 25th 2012, 20:57

      If any of the British comments are referring to me I am talking about the character NOT the actor. The character must be British. However I think they are wary of casting anyone not British, or Irish, after Lazenby; I think that may be what got Craig ahead of Hugh Jackman.

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    • DAZNOZ

      Oct 25th 2012, 21:15

      marode-Daniel Craig has signed to do 2 more with an option for a third. Roger Moore was 57 but he was too old for Octopussy let alone A View To A Kill. Which he freely admits to.

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    • Hadouken76

      Oct 25th 2012, 21:21

      I reckon it was more to do with the fact the Jackman was already a bona fide movie star and the producers didn't want a 'name' overshadowing the character.. Thats probably why the past Bond actors have been relatively unknown outside of TV work.

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    • parkerwest5179

      Oct 25th 2012, 21:30

      A black James Bond? Whatever next? A white Sha...oh, forget it.

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    • PhoenixWright

      Oct 25th 2012, 21:36

      Doesn't matter what race or nationality the actor playing Bond is, but the character must always be British. And posh. I like Elba, he'd be good, although his cockney-ness was barely suppressed in Thor, so he needs a voice coach first.

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    • DAZNOZ

      Oct 25th 2012, 21:48

      Just to say I attended the Dublin charity premiere last night and it was defo confirmed thst DC has signed a extension to his contract. So hes in the role for at least another 5 years and thats if the filns ar e made every 2 years. Doubtful that timeline will happen.

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    • parkerwest5179

      Oct 25th 2012, 21:56

      I'm not sure how I feel about this...no, wait: I am- I don't really care...mostly because I am not really into Bond. Why not make Jackie Chan the next Bond? How awesome would that be? I think that as long as the tradition of established characters is respected then it shouldn't really matter, but by the same token what is the point of unnecessary change for the sake of change? Idris Elba, or IE as he prefers to be known when referred to in internet threads, is undoubtedly a very cool man and a quality actor, but does that mean he would make a good Bond? As I say, I don't really care about the character so I don't know, but if you asked me if I thought he should play, say, Superman? I would probably say 'what is the point of that?'. An established character shouldn't need to be unnecessarily changed because he does not have a racially defined personality; why not make the next James Bond bald or give him a handlebar mustache or an eye-patch? None of these are defining traits of the character...I don't know really.

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    • StevePotter

      Oct 25th 2012, 22:03

      Well, I consider "James Bond 007" to just be a code name anyway, and Idris Elba is badass. So what's the problem here? HOWEVER, don't be so quick to call out people for being racist because they're complaining. If it's racist to complain about this, it's racist to complain about the casting in "The Last Airbender." Simple as that.

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    • StevePotter

      Oct 25th 2012, 22:04

      Racist to complain about the RACES of the actors, I should say. Complaining about their talent is perfectly valid.

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    • DravenCage

      Oct 25th 2012, 22:05

      They could easily have a black James Bond or an Asian James Bond simply by having the 007 designation assigned to different people and the James Bond name be the codename / alias for whichever spy has received the 007 honour. This could also be used to explain how the character is going strong in 2012 when he first showed up in the 60s.

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    • PhoenixWright

      Oct 25th 2012, 22:37

      @DravenCage - The good thing about the Bond series is that they don't have to bend over backwards explaining everything. Nobody who likes the films is worried about logic or continuity! ;)

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    • Hadouken76

      Oct 26th 2012, 0:30

      I think the Invisible car and CGI surfing in Die Another Day showed there were limits.

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    • Ali1748

      Oct 26th 2012, 1:42

      Even though I tend to join in on speculating the next Bond really what's the rush ? Craig is doing an oustanding job at the moment and doesn't look too old for the job.

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    • SteveMcc

      Oct 26th 2012, 6:34

      I agree that the age of Idris would be the only real stumbling block for me, I would like to see a younger Bond that goes deeper into the story of how Bond is formed as a character, goes through recruitment and 'earns his stripes' as such! I would love too see him cast as a Villain though! That would be absolutely fantastic to pit him against Craig in my opinion!

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    • renderpimp

      Oct 27th 2012, 4:36

      Well when I was first told about this I didnt even think in terms of colour. I was instantly in thought that He would totally own the part if he got it. He is a strong actor and I am sure he would bring an extra depth to the character. Didn't anyone else see that before thinking in terms of colour? Is that all he is. I am sure Idris Elba would like to be thought of as more than just a colour on the screen. It doesn't matter what colour bond is does it really aslong as the role is filled with someone who can do it justice.

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    • renderpimp

      Oct 27th 2012, 4:37

      oh and i also agree that Craig is spot on for bond at the moment. I am back into watching bond again thanks to the strong character he plays.

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    • d606w0

      Oct 29th 2012, 15:16

      The next bond will be Henry Cavill - the right age and he lost out to Criag last time around.

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    • amcll

      Nov 20th 2012, 0:49

      I'm just going to start by ignoring all the racism talk because the only thing racist about things like this is everyone starts throwing the word around whenever skin colours mentioned these days. The fact is bond being black just wouldn't make any chronological sense in the films! Which is exactly what craig set out to do when he got involved with casino royal. Craig's bond adds timeline and develops the narrative of bond for his skin colour or race to suddenly change at all in such a visual way would throw all this chronological depth to the wind and move the films back to the random adventures of bond iy became in the past. The franchise has only just been reinvented why try to reinvent it again by changing bond in such a visual way

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    • paige20

      Dec 29th 2012, 10:46

      The arguments about age are fair enough, the arguments about race not so much as remind me if I'm wrong but James Bond is also a designated code name, just like Q and M the point being their true identities are kept secret? So...his appearance doesn't technically matter, there being a Scottish bond, brown haired bonds and then a blonde bond is all fine.... Why can't there be a black bond, there are black British people you know, and there are black people that work for the government.... Just saying admit it is you that have a problem with a black bond, personally Idris is probably too old but if he wasn't he would make a great bond, fantastically British, strong, charismatic and a brilliant actor.

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    • edfeetham

      Aug 1st 2013, 11:51

      They made Bond blonde and look how much outrage there was from idiots. Can you imagine what small minded sorts would do if they cast Elba? He would be a great choice but age is an issue. How about a erudite Bond bad-guy instead? No age restrictions apply that way.

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    • aiyanaela

      Apr 10th 2014, 11:50

      I actually think its about time we had a female bond to be fair how cool would that be Jesse Bond, Bond Jesse.

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