Now that Craig’s time in the role has come to an end, rumors have begun to swirl about who will take over the role, as many stars have done since the 1962 release of “Dr. No,” starring Sean Connery.
Producer Barbara Broccoli recently said that discussions for recasting the role won’t even be held until 2022, but that doesn’t stop fans from speculating.
Here’s a look at six actors rumored to take over the role:
An up-and-coming star, Lashana Lynch has a role in “No Time to Die” as Nomi, a fellow secret agent that teams up with Bond to take on yet another villain.
While it’s unclear whether she’ll be able to play James Bond himself given her role in the franchise, many have speculated that she’d take on the moniker of 007 and lead the series herself for the time being.
In fact, it was confirmed in an interview with Harper’s Bazaar that Lynch’s character would assume the 007 identity while Bond enjoys his retirement – however, whether she’ll remain in the role remains to be seen.
When considering who could take over for Bond, fans always turn toward British action stars like “Venom: Let There be Carnage” actor Tom Hardy.
Hardy’s name has been tossed around since Craig expressed interest in exiting the franchise.
The 34-year-old star recently was asked by Entertainment Tonight about the rumors and simply said: “I don’t know about that.”
Adding fuel to the fire is Hardy’s “Venom” co-star Naomie Harris, who also told the outlet that he’d be “amazing” in the role.
Idris Elba is another name that’s been in fans’ mouths for a long time now, especially with calls for an actor of color to be cast in the role after decades of White men taking on the mantle.
Most recently starring “The Suicide Squad,” Elba’s swagger and savvy in action roles has made him a favorite for the role, and he even recently admitted to Capital Xtra that rumors have “always chased” him.
In the same interview, he avoided addressing the speculation directly, but said he’s happy starring in “Luther.”
Henry Cavill is another star that has caught fans’ attention after starring in action roles like “Man of Steel,” “The Witcher” and even “The Man from U.N.C.L.E.,” another British spy flick.
Furthermore, the 38-year-old actor has indicated that he’s interested in the role.
“If [Bond producers] Barbara [Broccoli] and Michael [G. Wilson] are interested in me in any capacity to be a part of their movies, then I will gladly have that discussion,” he recently told The Movie Dweeb, per Games Radar. “That would be something I’d be very keen to explore further.”
“Ah, the ‘B’ word,” the 31-year-old star said in an interview with The Mirror when asked about the rumors earlier this year.
“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,” he continued. “I think that’s fairly normal and I’m flattered to be in the category of Brits that people have noticed.”
Fan favorite and Marvel darling Tom Hiddleston has also been the subject of Bond rumors over the years.
In an interview with Empire magazine earlier this year, he addressed the speculation, dodging the question.
“What can I say that you don’t already know?” he said, per Yahoo. “It’s interesting in itself that I’ve suddenly become very aware of what I’m saying, is it not?”
He continued: “Because there’s something about what I’m saying that becomes the story. Not for you, but for the world outside. Whatever I say, I’ve found, generated more questions.”