The British tabloid press is a strange animal. It can seemingly exist on nothing but supposition, innuendo, and made-up headlines for weeks, and then one of the newspapers will break an amazing story and cover it in a way that puts more highbrow broadsheets to shame. One area, however, where it never really excels itself is the world of showbiz news, and when it comes to James Bond rumors they are always wide of the mark. So treat this rumor that Idris Elba is up for a different Bond role with healthy skepticism.
This weekend The Sun reported that Idris Elba is allegedly in negotiations to play the villain in the next Bond film. We are not entirely sure how this can be correct, given that they have no script, no director, and no James Bond but the sun was clearly a few column inches short this weekend.
Unleash the standard “unnamed source”:
“Idris has had informal talks with the studio and he has been told there is a role in the next Bond film for him, if he wants it. He won’t be the title character, but they do recognise the amount of pull and respect he commands, and they want to work with him on a completely original character for the next instalment… it looks like it would be the role of a villain.”
49-year-old Elba was named as a Bond candidate but he was always too old to be Bond, as are almost all of the runners and riders they keep breathlessly name-dropping online and in the press such as Tom Hardy.
The new Bond, when named, will be 38 or younger. They won’t already be a massive star or a prominent part of another huge franchise, and they probably have some solid television work behind them, and they will be at a stage in their career where they are affordable enough to be locked into a 3 picture deal with an option for a fourth.
An exception may be made for somebody like Henry Cavill, as he was in the final three for Casino Royale when Daniel Craig was cast. Moore, Dalton, and Brosnan were all cases of producers returning to a previous candidate who was considered previously.
Even so, Idris Elba as a Bond villain is intriguing, although likely just made up tabloid column padding. Stringer Bell (The Wire) was an immense character and his villain turns in Hobbs and Shaw and Star Trek Beyond were fun enough.