I guess it’s time we accept the ugly, hard truth that Idris Elba will not be the next James Bond—at least not right out the gate.
According to Rolling Stone, the Luther actor was asked whether or not he’d be taking up the mantle of the next James Bond during the world premiere of his upcoming, highly anticipated Netflix film The Harder They Fall at the London Film Festival. Daniel Craig, who currently stars in the highly coveted role, will be hanging up his suit after his fifth and final time as the dashing spy in No Time to Die, out in theaters on Friday.
“No, I’m not going to be James Bond,” Elba confirmed. After being pressed on whether or not he would be interested in taking on the role later down the line, he added: “Who wouldn’t? How amazing would it be to have a Black James Bond? It’s a sign of the times when we can stop talking about Black, white, and color.” OK, so are you saying there’s hope, Idris? There’s a chance??
*Deep, heavy, British Negro spiritual sigh* (Wait, is that even a thing?)
To be honest , I don’t know if me nor any of my Black aunties can take Idris playing with our emotions like this anymore. Like, at this point, I don’t even know if I want him to do it anymore. I don’t even think HE wants to do it anymore. Remember that interview he did with Vanity Fair back in 2019 where he talked about the concerns he’d have if he was to take on the role?
Per Vanity Fair:
“You just get disheartened when you get people from a generational point of view going, ‘It can’t be.’ And it really turns out to be the color of my skin. And then if I get it and it didn’t work, or it did work, would it be because of the color of my skin? That’s a difficult position to put myself into when I don’t need to. James Bond is a hugely coveted, iconic, beloved character that takes audiences on this massive escapism journey. Of course, if someone said to me ‘Do you want to play James Bond?,’ I’d be like, Yeah! That’s fascinating to me. But it’s not something I’ve expressed, like, ‘yeah, I wanna be the black James Bond.’”
That’s valid, AF. I can understand that point of view. And if that’s still where he stands now, I say give it to Regé-Jean Page. Or Damson Idris. Or Aaron Pierre. Or Henry Golding. Or John David Washington.
If the man (read: Idris) doesn’t want to do it, I think it’s time we let him off the hook once and for all. Who knows, maybe in a couple of years, he’ll surprise us.