Idris Elba Calls James Bond Casting ‘The Wildest Rumor in the World’

Idris Elba
Julian Mackler/BFA/REX/Shutterstock

Idris Elba is shaken (not stirred) by the push for him to become the next James Bond.

“It is the wildest rumor in the world,” he said on Good Morning America Thursday, adding that there have not been any “talks with me and studios about any of that.”

Still, Elba seemed overwhelmed by the amount of people who have asked him about the potential casting. “Everywhere I go people want that to happen.”

The actor, who is currently on a press tour for “Star Trek Beyond” in which he plays the villain, Krall, joked around that he has aged out of the role. “If I’m really honest, I think I’m too old for that,” he said. “Running around and cars and ladies and martinis… who wants to do that? Sounds terrible.”

In August of last year, Elba told Variety during a cover story interview that he would have his fans to thanks. “If human beings want to know if there’s any connectivity between all of us, the one thing I’ve heard around the world universally is that, ‘You’ll be great at James Bond!’” Elba said. “If it should happen, that’s proof there’s connectivity amongst human beings. If everyone wants something, they can make it happen. That would be true.”

Then, in September, controversy arose when James Bond author Anthony Horowitz commented that Elba was “too street” to play 007. “For me, Idris Elba is a bit too rough to play the part,” he said. “It’s not a color issue. I think he is probably a bit too ‘street’ for Bond.”

After facing backlash, the author apologized for the comment. “Clumsily, I chose the word ‘street’ as Elba’s gritty portrayal of DCI John Luther was in my mind but I admit it was a poor choice of word. I am mortified to have caused offense.”

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  1. Jose R. Marmolejo says:

    Ms. Broccoli, with all due respect, why not try a James Bond 008, with Idris Elba. And their, you have a franchise. Think about it.

  2. Adrian Kesler says:

    Idris Elba needs to play James Bond it would be awesome beyond words.

  3. traveler501 says:

    Elba would be absolutely astounding as Bond! Please?

  4. Alice Luther says:

    It HAS to be him. The Bond series needs a person of color at its healm, and who better than Elba? He’s considered sexy and seductive to a wide-ranging female audience. He can do both the British gentleman and the troubled spy with mysterious intentions. It’s also noteworthy that, like Lupito N’ongo, he’s dark and not Caucasa-fied, and thus has the power to overcome our still-engrained notions of aesthetics and sex appeal… As opposed to, say, the brilliant but very (half) white-looking Jesse Wlliams and/or Halle Berry. I’d hazard a guess that anyone who’s seen Luther could easily picture Elba as Bond, and I will be beyond thrilled if he’s chosen (and accepts?). And since when is 43 TOO OLD?!? Perhaps he became so invested in his Mandela role he’s forgotten he’s not actually elderly. Liam Neeson’s 20 years older and has remodeled his career as an a$$-kicking action hero.

    Michael Fassbender (speaking of Lupita N’ongo transcending racial aesthetics… And paying a high price for it) is, IMHO, too inconsistent; on occasion I can’t bear to watch him–e.g., MacBeth.

    I could’ve possibly imagined Tom Hiddleston pre-HiddleSwift, but, really, he’s discredited himself so unbelievably badly. What was he thinking? He should fire whichever publicist thought up that stunt. Could-a been another Benedict Cumberbatch (i.e., a young British hearthrob known around the world who’s taken seriously and in demand for everything from Star Trek to Hamlet) but now he’s just a laughing stock who got way too TMZ-crazed to be taken seriously as an actor, as opposed to an everyday fame-chaser.

  5. If Idris Elba is not the next Bond, then the producers are failing at life. I was also sceptical at first, but after watching Luther… He could be one of the best 00’s ever.

  6. Ma Barker says:

    He is too old for Bond. His acting while good is stiff. And Bond is a canon character, THE canon character he is white. Want a black 007 write one.

  7. Philly58 says:

    I am in the camp of Idris Elba being the next James Bond. I have been a fan of his work since his days of Stringer Bell.

  8. crossie says:

    I’m in the Idris Elba camp for next Bond; Tom Hiddleston would probably be good, but you almost want a guy with no other major role association basically, I would see Loki playing Bond. Of course, that may be a problem for Elba if ‘The Dark Tower’ movies work out (I also might hear him as Chief Bogo from Zootopia). On the other hand, the other big contender, Jamie Bell, is too unknown for me to care.

    One thing, if he isn’t Bond, he’d be a heck of a Bond villain; he had a speech as an animated tiger about cuckoos that put Christoph Waltz’s similar speech about cuckoos to shame (and I can listen to Waltz villainously monologue all day). Which, umm, villainous monologues about cuckoos are apparently a thing, now.

  9. Betty Lewis says:

    He is a smart man. That would not be the best role for him. He would do well in a Clint E. film.

  10. nobody important says:

    Say what you will, but Idris Elba is still the one that I want to play Bond.

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