No Times to Die came out this year, after it was filmed in 2019. It was Daniel Craig’s final outing as James Bond, after they roped him back in post-Spectre. Craig was, overall, a good 007. He was more of a surly street-fighter version of Bond, as opposed to dapper, elegant, man-of-the-world spy. I’m mildly curious about what direction producers will go in for the next Bond. Apparently, they’re not actively looking at the moment – they want to get some distance from Daniel Craig’s version, I suppose – but they have an idea of the qualities the next Bond will have. And it’s not going to be a Gen Z twenty-something 007. It probably will be an Elder Millennial.
James Bond film producer Michael G. Wilson, who runs Eon Productions with Barbara Broccoli, has revealed that a seduction scene from the 1963 thriller From Russia With Love is always used to test those aspiring to play Ian Fleming’s ruthless spy.
During an ‘In Conversation’ event at London’s British Film Institute to celebrate 60 years of James Bond, Wilson noted that they always need a good actress to play opposite the actor participating in the audition.
“We always use the same scene … and that’s the one in From Russia With Love ,where Bond comes back to his room after the assassination, and he starts taking off his shirt, goes into the room to bathe. Then he hears something, takes his gun, goes in and the girl’s in the bed,” he told the audience at the BFI on Friday night. He is referring to the moment where Sean Connery’s Bond finds Soviet military clerk Tatiana Romanova, played by Daniela Bianchi, in the middle of his bed, wearing only a black velvet choker.
Later, Wilson spoke to Deadline and reiterated a point he made to us several months ago: ”It’s a whole new world. We’ve got to see what happens with Amazon. But there’ll always be a Bond.”
He also stressed that casting has not started for the new 007, ”No matter what others tell you.”
However, he did reveal that younger actors are out of the running. ”We’ve tried looking at younger people in the past. But trying to visualize it doesn’t work. 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.”
It literally just occurred to me that Daniel Craig was the Generation X James Bond. He was born in 1968, and the internet says the Gen X birth years are 1965-1980. So he’s an Elder Gen Xer and a surly one at that. He had to count on Xennial Q (Ben Whishaw is 41) and Boomer M, Ralph Fiennes? And now they’ll get someone in their 30s? It will probably be someone in their 40s, I’m just saying. The evolution of this character – or lack of evolution – is pretty fascinating. They’re going to have a hell of a time finding the next guy.
Photos courtesy of Avalon Red, Backgrid.