* All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widgets, while odds in copy are accurate at time of publishing but subject to change.
No spoilers, we promise! After multiple delays due to the Covid-19 pandemic, James Bond is back in our lives this week as No Time To Die hits screens across the world. The film marks the fifth and final time Daniel Craig stars as 007, leaving a void bigger than Oddjob’s hat when it comes to the role.
Seven actors have played Ian Fleming’s famous spy on film, but now that Daniel Craig is hanging up his bow tie, the question on everyone’s lips is who will be the next man or woman to play James Bond? According to Bond producer Barbara Broccoli, a new 007 will not be named until 2022.
But, with the new picture being released this week, let’s see what the odds are saying on the next actor to be handed their licence to kill.
Game of Thrones and Bodyguard star Richard Madden could be swapping his sword for a shooter after plenty of backing from Paddy’s punters. The Scot, who played Robb Stark in GOT, would be a very solid choice to follow in the footsteps of the most famous Bond of all, compatriot Sean Connery.
Craig brought an edgier and harder demeanour to the James Bond character. So, if producers wanted to continue down that path – which has proved popular with audiences the world over – then who better than the gritty Tom Hardy to fill the void.
The Dunkirk and The Dark Knight Rises star is a proven huge box office draw and certainly seems to be a popular selection with punters to be the next Bond in our market. At 44, his time in the role could be limited to two or three films, but we wouldn’t put it past the Londoner.
James Norton is a man fans of British television have seen donning a suit an awful lot of late. He is another relative youngster at 36, so again could keep the role into the next decade.
McMafia’s leading man was up in lights on the big screen recently thanks to his part in Little Women opposite Saoirse Ronan, Emma Watson and Florence Pugh, so you know he can hang with some of the game’s leading ladies. Will Miss Moneypenny be the next woman we see him standing across from in the cinema?
Poor Idris Elba has been linked with the Bond job for years now, and let’s face it he would have been the perfect person to do it. But, as Craig committed to fourth and fifth films, it seems like Father Time may have snatched away the Luther star’s chance at being Bond as he closes in on 50 years old. Our punters aren’t writing him off just yet though.
Despite insistence from Craig and Broccoli that James Bond will never be played by a woman, punters just aren’t buying it and have backed Lashana Lynch to carry the famous Walther PPK.
There is no need to even check Lynch’s credentials as a big-screen badass – she’s already cemented that with her performances in Captain Marvel and No Time To Die. It wouldn’t be a surprise at all to see her move to the head of the pack when it comes to the Bond universe.
The Welshman would become the second man from his country to play 007 after Timothy Dalton in 1987 (The Living Daylights) and 1989 (Licence to Kill). Given that he is 42, he’ll need to get into that Aston Martin pretty quickly if he wants to play the super spy.
In his storied film career, he’s gone from being a baddie in the Fast & Furious franchise to playing Gaston in Beauty and the Beast, so Bond could be the next challenge ahead.
What about someone from left field you say? Well, after seeing Lionel Messi lie down behind a wall for PSG this week, anything is bloody possible, isn’t it! Don’t forget, not many people saw Daniel Craig coming…
Tom Hiddleston has the humour required and given that he usually plays the villain in movies these days, being the ultimate good guy would be a nice change of pace for British acting great.
Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe scared The Living Daylights out of our traders the day after No Time To Die’s release. From a rank outsider at 250/1, Radcliffe was the subject of a flurry of bets, bringing the 32-year-old tumbling in the markets to swap his wand for a gun.
Other eye-catching names in the market include an outside shot on Normal People’s Paul Mescal becoming the second 007 from Ireland. Or maybe producers could tie down the current Spiderman Tom Holland and convince him to hang up his web-shooters.
Somehow though, despite how handsome he is in a suit, we don’t think David Beckham has the acting chops to be Bond next. Although, we think we speak for everyone when we say that Danny Dyer deserves a stab at the part. Finally, Prince Harry has gone to Hollywood too recently…