Don’t worry, Daniel Craig is most likely still James Bond… at least for the next and supposedly final movie, “Bond 25”. But in a recent interview with the Daily Mail, producer Barbara Broccoli made some statements that show a flexibility with changes to the character when Craig is done…
“These films tend to reflect the times so we always try to push the envelope a little bit, anything is possible. Right now it’s Daniel Craig, and I’m very happy with Daniel Craig, but who knows what the future will bring?”
Technically Bond has been reinvited at least once already; when Daniel Craig took on the role back in 2006. Before that Bond had always been a mostly dark-haired young playboy type. Craig added a gritty modern feel to the character with his slightly older more rough around the edges portrayal, not to mention the blonde hair. Several movies later, he’s pretty widely accepted as one of the best Bonds who’s made it to screen. But changing two major characteristics of the character, like his race and even gender, may be too much for fans to swallow. Hollywood has lately been pushing to include more opportunities for people of color and female leading roles, so there has been some outcry for the next Bond to reflect the times and maybe be a woman, or a dashing black man, or even a gay man perhaps(Bond being bi-sexual was actually hinted at in SkyFall btw). However, Barbara also re-iterated that the character itself was written a very specific way by Ian Fleming decades ago, and to change too much about him would be a disservice to the legacy Ian left behind. It’s not about being racist or sexist or out of date; it’s about sticking to characteristics that were specifically chosen to help define a particular fictional person. Not all characters in fiction are partially defined by them being male or white, therefore they can be more easily be changed up in experimental ways. Like making Marvel’s Nick Fury a bald black man, contrary to his white skinned and white-haired comic origins, for example.
While she did conclude with their being room for changes in the future, it does sound like they may not want to shake up the character too much. Perhaps an alternative or middle ground could be reached… like a spin-off character? Maybe Bond works with a young black woman on a mission who is equally as badass and charismatic as him… if her character is well received, she gets her own movie. Or something like that… the world is big enough for multiple secret agents, is it not?