Could the next James Bond be a Jane Bond? While actors James Norton and Tom Hardy are the favorites to land the role, women are seeing some action at UK and offshore sportsbooks on a prop bet of who will play the role next.
Ladbrokes has the two actors as 3/1 choices. Jack Huston is 6/1, while Aidan Turner and Idris Elba follow at 8/1.
Any female landing the role is at 11/1, but the only woman mentioned is Emily Blunt, who is at 33/1. A spokesperson for the sportsbook said the actress has seen her odds go from 100/1 to 33/1.
“All eyes have been on the head of the Bond market but Emily Blunt has been the subject of a flurry of weekend bets and she’s now the most likely female to be handed the role,” the spokesperson said.
Blunt might have a part even if she doesn’t get the lead. She is currently 20/1 to be Daniel Craig’s Bond Girl in the actor’s last appearance in the role.
Craig’s Last Dance
Whoever gets the role will be waiting until at least 2020. Craig, who has played Bond in four films since 2006 – Casino Royale, Quantum Of Solace, Skyfall, and Spectre – said he would do one more.
It was thought that he was done with iconic character. The actor said at one point he would “rather slash my wrists” than do another Bond film. That could have been a negotiating ploy to get more money from the studio.
He toned down the rhetoric and said last August in a television interview that he would be in the role one last time.
“I have been quite cagey about it,” Craig said. “I have been doing interviews all day and people have been asking me and I think I’ve been rather coy. But kind of felt like if I was going to speak the truth I should speak truth to you.”
The film has a release date of November and is entitled Bond 25. The title comes from the fact that this is the 25th Bond film. Others who have played the suave spy include actors Sean Connery, Roger Moore, Pierce Brosnan, and Timothy Dalton.
Handicapping Who’s Next
Norton’s work is primarily in the UK, and he has stared in British television series Happy Valley, Grantchester, War & Peace, and McMafia. The 32 year old doesn’t like his chances and has actually pleaded with gamblers not to bet on him.
Hardy, 40, has more roles on the big screen and might be the more conventional choice. He has been in Mad Max: Fury Road, The Revenant, and The Dark Knight Rises and Legend.
Huston was in the 2016 version of Ben Hur. The 35-year-old Brit has also had roles in The Longest Ride, American Hustle, and The Twilight Saga.
Elba is seen as a very viable Bond despite the 8/1 odds. If chosen he would be the first Bond of color, and has gotten a vote of confidence from noted director Steven Spielberg. The actor, though, has discounted his chances, saying he is too old at 45 to play the famous spy.