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15th May 2023

Tom Hanks wants Idris Elba as the next James Bond

Steve Hopkins

tom hanks

‘I would issue that licence to Idris Elba.’

Tom Hanks has said that 007’s licence to kill should be handed down to Idris Elba, and the Britsh actor should be the next James Bond.

Speaking to the BBC, the Hollywood icon made clear that he thinks the Luther star should take over the mantle from Daniel Craig who last pulled on the tuxedo in 2021’s ‘No Time to Die’.

“Understand this,” Hanks said.

“James Bond has a licence to kill. I would issue that licence to Idris Elba just based on the work that I’ve seen him do.”

Hanks isn’t alone in his thinking. Pierce Brosnan has backed Elba as well. But Elba, in media interviews at least, hasn’t seemed so sure.

After being linked to the role for over a decade, the actor recently denied having any serious interest in the gig. “It is not a goal for my career,” IndieWire reported him as saying.

“I don’t think that, you know, playing Bond will satisfy some of my personal goals. It will definitely satisfy the will of a nation. I’m not gonna lie, every corner of the world I go, and I’m talking about different cultures, they always go ‘Bond,’ and I feel it is beyond me at this junction. It’s beyond me. You know, it’s not a question of, should I, do I, will I. It is what the will of the nation dictates sometimes.”

In February, Elba also discounted him playing Bond, but at the time he was promoting his icon character, Luther’s progression to the big screen, in Luther: The Fallen Sun.

He said: “We’ve been working on the TV show for about 10 years and so the natural ambition is to take it to the big screen, and so we’re here with the first movie.”

Elba continued: “You know, a lot of people talk about another character that begins with ‘J’ and ends with ‘B’.

“But I’m not going to be that guy. I’m going to be John Luther. That’s who I am.”

Longtime Bond producer Michael G. Wilson recently said that, while a new film is at least two years away, the casting search has begun.

And while a lot of names have been thrown around in recent years, he made clear the team wants to avoid younger stars, in favour of more seasoned actors.

“We’ve tried looking at younger people in the past,” Wilson said. “But trying to visualise 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 30-something.”

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