With No Time to Die all set to be Daniel Craig's final outing as the iconic master of espionage, James Bond, all eyes are now on who will next take up the mantle, and more importantly, whether there will be any drastic changes to the intrepid spy. Rumours have been circulating for years that James Bond will become Jane Bond once Craig steps down, but producer Barbara Broccoli has now clarified that this will not be the case, though she does not rule out diversifying the role completely.

"He can be of any color, but he is male. I believe we should be creating new characters for women - strong female characters. I'm not particularly interested in taking a male character and having a woman play it. I think women are far more interesting than that."

Brocolli's comments regarding the creation of new characters for women does make sense, so long as someone actually does it, but it certainly sounds like the Bond producer is standing pretty steadfast on keeping the 007 character male. Broccoli's words echo what she has said about the character last year when speaking with The Guardian.

"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."

The idea of opening the role up beyond white actors is an interesting one though, and one that hopefully most fans will see no issue with. Though remembering the vitriol that was sent Daniel Craig's way after being cast for Casino Royale for simply having blonde hair suggests that not everyone will be on board.

No Time to Die will feature actress Lashana Lynch as an agent named Nomi who in the movie will carry the 007 number, making her the first black and female star to do so in the franchise's history. This of course was met with backlash from the more toxic element of the James Bond fanbase, with many misunderstanding the scenario and believing she was Daniel Craig's replacement as Bond.

Whoever does takeover though will have to wait until Daniel Craig is finished with James Bond, which is all set to happen after the upcoming No Time to Die. The movie finds Bond having left active service and enjoying a tranquil life in Jamaica. His peace is short-lived when his old friend Felix Leiter from the CIA turns up asking for help. The mission to rescue a kidnapped scientist turns out to be far more treacherous than expected, leading Bond onto the trail of a mysterious villain armed with dangerous new technology.

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No Time to Die is directed by Cary Joji Fukunaga, and stars Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris, Ben Whishaw, Rory Kinnear, Jeffrey Wright, Léa Seydoux, and Christoph Waltz who will all reprise their roles from previous films, with Rami Malek, Lashana Lynch, and Ana de Armas joining the cast.

Whether we will eventually see the oft-rumoured Idris Elba as Bond remains to be seen. This comes to us from Variety.

Jon Fuge at Movieweb
Jon Fuge