One highly popular future Bond casting idea has Idris Elba jumping aboard to become the first-ever black 007. Others prefer the idea of swapping genders and making Bond female for the first time ever. Charlize Theron, Emily Blunt and Gillian Anderson are just a few of the women whose names have come up in speculation about which actress might be a contender to take on the role of Bond once Craig is ready to give it up. The possibility of a female Bond seemed to become more viable when Jodie Whittaker landed the role of The Dcotor on Doctor Who, making her the first woman ever to portray the iconic Time Lord.
But unfortunately, fans of the female Bond idea will likely not get their way any time soon. Speaking to The Guardian, Bond producer Barbara Broccoli made it clear that 007 will continue to remain his old traditional male self for the foreseeable future. Broccoli said:
“Bond is male. He’s a male character. He was written as a male and I think he’ll probably stay as a male. And that’s fine. We don’t have to turn male characters into women. Let’s just create more female characters and make the story fit those female characters.”
Indeed, Broccoli’s point about not turning male characters into female characters has been brought up previously as regards the gender-swapped Bond idea. Actress Rachel Weisz (who also happens to be married to Daniel Craig) has been quoted as saying that Bond should not be a woman. Former Bond girl Rosamund Pike has also gone on record as being against the idea of switching Bond’s gender.
It’s a fair point to make that creating original, interesting female characters should be prioritized above arguably gimmicky gender-swapping moves. That being said, swapping genders can sometimes lead to good results and strong box office returns, as was demonstrated by this year’s female-led Ocean’s 8, a reboot of the male-centric Ocean’s franchise. If the Bond franchise should find itself falling off at the box office in the future, making Bond female could be a way to help re-invigorate the venerable property.
So, even though Barbara Broccoli seems against the idea of a female Bond right now, that doesn’t mean she will always feel that way. Much will depend on what happens with Bond 25, the planned next installment in the series. Daniel Craig will be back for that one, with Cary Fukunaga on-board as director after Danny Boyle abruptly dropped out due to creative differences. If Bond 25 matches the numbers put up by Skyfall and Spectre, there’s no reason to think Eon will deviate from the formula for the next Bond after that. But all bets will be off if for some reason Bond 25 falters. The door could still be open for a person of color, and/or a woman, playing James Bond.