Daniel Craig is done being James Bond. And if you try to make him do it again, he just might commit suicide.
Wow. Okay, Daniel, message received. But a simple “no thanks” would have been enough.
Lest you think we’re being hyperbolic, Craig’s exact words were “I’d rather break this glass and slash my wrists” than do another Bond movie. He shared this gentle sentiment with TimeOut magazine, and then went on to say that if he ever plays Bond again, “it would only be for the money.”
Why does this seem very familiar? Remember when Sean Connery said that he’d “never” play James Bond again, but then the studio paid him a bajillion dollars and he returned to the James Bond franchise to star in Never Say Never Again?
If history repeats itself, in another ten years we’ll be enjoying Daniel Craig in the new James Bond thriller, I Was Totally Kidding About Slashing My Wrists.
If Craig is true to his word, Spectre—the 24th film in the never-ending James Bond series, out November 6th—will be the last time he consents to receiving wheelbarrows full of cash to jump out of helicopters and kiss beautiful women. (And if you try to make him, he’ll pluck out his eyes like Oedipus!)
Who’ll replace him as the iconic British agent 007? Don’t ask Craig. “I don’t give a fuck,” he told TimeOut. “Good luck to them!” Which makes him sound just slightly less hostile than your buddy after his fifth rum and Coke, slurfully insisting that he doesn’t care who his ex is sleeping with now.
He did have a few words of advice for the future Bond actor, whomever that might be. “Don’t be shit,” he offered. “You’ve got to step up. People do not make movies like this any more. This is really rare now. So don’t be shit.”
Are you thinking what we’re thinking? Yep, Daniel Craig should absolutely be directing James Bond movies. Can you imagine him behind the camera, shouting out helpful guidance like “Try not to suck so hard” and “Let’s shoot that scene again, but this time without releasing quite so many turds from that acting shithole you call a mouth?” Viva la cinema!
We’re kidding, of course. We’re absolutely going to miss Craig as James Bond. Honestly, we’re a little bit in denial about it. We feel about his tenure as Bond like some people think about college. We’ve romanticized it way out of proportion.
But while Craig may not “give a fuck” who the next James Bond will be, we kinda do. Whoever comes next has big shoes to fill; not just Craig’s, but Sean Connery’s. And also Roger Moore, Timothy Dalton, Pierce Brosnan and… those other two guys. The one from Australia, and the one with the mustache.
There’s been a lot of speculation about Bond version 2016, especially amongst compulsive gamblers. British bookie William Hill thinks it’ll be Homeland’s Damian Lewis. He’s given Lewis 3:1 odds of becoming the next Bond.
BoyleSports, an Ireland-based online betting firm, has their money on Tom Hardy, the Dark Knight Rises bad guy and “Max” in the new feminist Mad Max. They think his odds are 2:1, just slightly ahead of Idris Elba (with 3:1), Damian Lewis (7:2) and Henry Cavill (4:1), and ridiculously ahead of David Beckham (with an unimpressive 250:1 odds).
Personally, we’re rooting for Idris Elba. For several reasons.
One, he has yet to make a movie in which he’s been, to use Daniel Craig’s poetic wording, “shit.” He played a Norse God in two Thor movies and one Avengers movie, and not once was he shit. He battled sea monsters in Pacific Rim, which probably should have been shit, but no, it was decidely badass. Prometheus? American Gangster? The freaking Wire? Not shit, not shit, and absolutely not shit.
Reason number two: Anthony Horowitz, who wrote a James Bond novel called “Trigger Mortis”—which apparently makes him an expert on all things Bondsian—said in a recent interview that Elba is “too street” to play 007.
It wasn’t, he added, a “color issue.” It’s just that “Elba is a bit too rough to play the part.”
Of course it‘s not a “color issue.” Just like your racist uncle isn’t being racist when he says Obama is a Muslim who wants to steal guns from Caucasian grandmothers. Totally not about race at all!
To Horowitz’s credit, he later apologized for his “poor choice of word,” claiming that he was thinking of Elba’s portrayal in the BBC series Luther, in which Elba played a gritty detective. Because obviously, once an actor does something well, that’s all he allowed to do forever. It’s why Bill Murray has only ever played golf course groundskeepers with speech impediments.
We don’t think Elba would be an amazing just because he’s African American—although you have to admit it’d be nice to finally have a James Bond whose skin tone isn’t somewhere between “Irish pale” and “translucent.” Our feelings about his Bond credentials were best expressed by one Charles Clymer, a Twitter user who responded to Horowitz’s comments with this poignant observation:
“If Idris Elba is ‘too street’ to be James Bond, then what hope is there for the rest of us? The man could be in pajamas and outclass us.”
It’s funny because it’s true.
(Originally published by Men’s Health)