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Daniel Craig has completed filming his last run as James Bond, with the 25th Bond film, No Time to Die, premiering in November. The question has been out there for a while now, “Who is going to be the next 007?”

It’s still up for debate, but there have been a number of names thrown around. There are a lot of opinions out there, but not just in the media, with Anglo readers placing their “votes” in the comments section on Facebook.

Here is a handy-dandy update on each of the actors predicted to be James Bond, all in one space:

1. Tom Hardy

Tom Hardy appears to be the frontrunner, but that’s not promised, as anything can happen. But, he does have his action hero stripes, starring in films like 2010’s Inception, 2011’s Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy and 2015’s The Revenant. The storylines for all three movies call on survival of the fittest, which falls in line with the Bond movies.

In addition to the above, he starred as a spy in the romantic comedy This Means War (2012), opposite Chris Pine and Reese Witherspoon. James Bond definitely has a sense of humor, even if understated.

Hardy also took the lead in the mystery-drama series Taboo (2017-2020), which he co-created with his father.

He’s not one to shy away from carrying a project.

2. Idris Elba

A lot of fans out there first met Idris Elba as Stringer in The Wire (2002-2004). While Stringer is a drug dealer, James Bond doesn’t always follow the law, himself.

Elba became even more well-known when taking on the title role in the BBC America series Luther (2010-2019). DCI John Luther may not be MI6, but he does possess some of the same traits as 007, like using the power of deduction to solve practically unsolvable cases. As well, he gets on well with the ladies. 

We’ve also seen Elba in action-thrillers like 2007’s 28 Week Later, 2013’s Pacific Rim and 2019’s Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw.

With all three films having a high stress factor, he’s good at playing characters under pressure. Elba has put it out there that he’s not all that interested in the role, but at the same time, he’s still being discussed as a candidate.

3. Henry Cavill

Just this week, Henry Cavill said he’d be keen on playing Bond, if offered. That’s one vote for Cavill (his vote).

We were first introduced to Cavill in Tudors (2007-2010) as Charles Brandon, an advisor to King Henry VIII (Jonathan Rhys Meyer). In 2013, he took on the iconic role of Superman in Man of Steel. It’s the kind of role that can help an actor breakthrough on an international level, but at the same time, it can be pigeon-holing.

But, since then, he also starred in the 2015 spy thriller The Man From U.N.C.L.E. as CIA agent Napoleon Solo. And in 2019, he took the lead in the fantasy series The Witcher. Just recently, he popped up in the new film Enola Holmes as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle‘s Sherlock Holmes.

It seems he’s evaded the aforementioned pitfall.

4. Sam Heughan

Sam Heughan is probably best known for his role as Jamie Fraser, an 18th century Highland warrior, in the sci-fi/romance series Outlander (2014-2020). He becomes romantically involved with a combat nurse from 1945, who has time-traveled back to his era.

We also saw him in the 2018 romantic comedy The Spy Who Dumped Me, opposite Mila Kunis. He’s not the spy in the title (whew, because that guy is a jerk), but another one by the name of Sebastian, who helps Kunis’ character navigate some dangerous situations.

His CV is filled out with other roles, like in the British soap opera Doctors (2009), starring in 21 episodes, but it’s not quite all that Bond-esque. That’s not to say he won’t be seriously considered, as he is truly an Anglo Fan Favorite, winning the official title with 3 million votes via a poll we ran back in 2014. 

He has a solid built-in fanbase at this point.

5. Tom Ellis

Tom Ellis captured viewers’ hearts as Miranda Hart‘s love interest Gary in the romantic comedy Miranda (2009-2015). And from there he moved to the U.S. to star in the fantasy series Lucifer (2016-2021), based off of Neil Gaiman‘s writings.

We also saw him in Doctor Who, starring in the 2007 episode “Last of the Time Lords” as Thomas Milligan. He also took on a starring role in the BBC America series Merlin (2010) as Cenred. You may also know him from the British soap EastEnders (2006) as Dr. Oliver.

He seems to be doing the rounds on TV, but doesn’t quite have the action hero credentials… just yet.

6. James Norton

James Norton thrilled viewers as the number one baddie in the police procedural series Happy Valley (2014-2016). Also in 2014, he took on the role of a crime-solving clergyman in Grantchester.

In 2016, he took the lead in the TV adaptation of War and Peace as Andrei Bolkonsky. You may have spotted him on American TV, too, when he joined the AMC family, starring in the crime drama McMafia (2018-2019) as Alex Goodman.

In 2019, he jumped onto the big screen, starring in Little Women as John Brooke.

He’s had some major roles and has some major staying power. He would definitely be a draw if he were chosen to be the next Bond.

7. Tom Hiddleston

Tom Hiddleston became an Anglo favorite when portraying Loki, Thor’s mischievous little brother in the Marvel franchise. Hiddleston himself got into some mischief, when getting romantical with American pop star Taylor Swift. His off-screen antics seemed to have annoyed a large portion of his fanbase, aka the infamous “I Love Taylor Swift” tee shirt debacle,

But, James Bond can be polarizing and he gets away with it. Hiddleston’s attempt at being an international playboy may just work in his favor.

Even so, it seems he redeemed himself when starring in AMC’s The Night Manager. We should point out, this John le Carré adaptation does revolve around the spy game, which may land Hiddleston some points… for whoever is keeping score.

8. Daniel Kaluuya

Daniel Kaluuya was a part of the original Skins series, signing on in 2007 to play Posh Kenneth in the teen drama. In 2009, he stepped into the Whoniverse, starring as Barclay in the Doctor Who episode “Planet of the Dead.”

You may also know him from other fan favorite series like Psychoville (2009-2011), The Fades (2011) and Babylon (2014). More recently, he took the lead in the horror-thriller Get Out (2017), and starred opposite the late Chadwick Boseman in 2018’s Black Panther.

James Bond calls on stamina to maintain his position in the spy world. Kaluuya seems to have what it takes, keeping up the momentum to make project after project.

9. Jack Lowden

Jack Lowden may be lesser-known than the other actors on this list, but that doesn’t mean he’s less qualified. We first saw Lowden in the mystery series The Tunnel (2013) as Adam Roebuck. In 2014, he popped up in the historical miniseries The Passing Bells. He was also in the 2016 War and Peace TV series adaptation, opposite fellow possible James Bond candidate, James Norton (mentioned above).

In 2017, he starred in Christopher Nolan‘s war drama Dunkirk as flying officer Collins.

While his CV may be shorter than the other candidates, it’s quite impressive and he may still end up on the shortlist for Bond.

10. Cillian Murphy

Cillian Murphy isn’t just a household name but a very recognizable face, with such defined features and intense expressions (that can be alarmingly scary). We are leaning more toward him being a Bond villain.

But, we’ve gotten ahead of ourselves, let’s go over some of his prior work. Of course, Murphy plays Thomas Shelby in the renowned crime drama series Peaky Blinders (2013-2019). Back in the day, he starred in 2002’s 28 Days Later as a survivor on the run from zombies. And later, in 2010’s Inception, alongside Tom Hardy (mentioned above). Annnnd in 2017’s Dunkirk, which also stars Jack Lowden (just mentioned above).

We’re seeing some overlap, here.

At the least, we know he works well with others. Bond needs to be able to trust the people around him.

11. Richard Madden 

And, finally, based on photos alone, it seems Richard Madden takes the win. He’s got the look, the controlling gaze, and gives off an overall sense of, “I got this.”

But, of course, there’s more to the decision-making.

Madden was an original cast member of the epic series Game of Thrones, starring as Robb Stark. But if you remember the red wedding scene from season three’s “The Rains of Castamere,” then you’re aware of his fate. GoT is known to kill off central characters, but that didn’t deter Madden as an actor.

In 2014, he starred in the Western miniseries Klondike. And in 2016, we saw him in the historical series Medici. But, more recently, he stunned in 2018’s Bodyguard, opposite Keeley Hawes. Madden portrays a former soldier and troubled police officer, who is assigned to protect the Home Secretary (Hawes). He doesn’t quite agree with her politics, but even so, he takes his job seriously.

Earlier this year, we saw him up on the big screen in Sam Mendes1917 as Lieutenant Joseph Blake.

In addition to the look, Madden has the receipts.

Final Thought: We have a feeling the powers behind Bond might surprise everyone and choose someone completely out of the blue. Or, that might be wishful thinking, to shake things up, that is.

Who would you like to see as the next Bond? 

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Filed Under: James Bond
By Brigid Brown