Sony Hack: Idris Elba should play James Bond next, says Amy Pascal

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The rumors about Idris Elba being the next James Bond (and first Black Bond) have been around for years. I think pretty much as soon as Quantum of Solace crapped out, people were like “Blah on Daniel Craig, someone else should be Bond now.” So the game of “who will be the next Bond?” began, even though it ended up that Daniel would sign on for two more Bond films, Skyfall and Spectre (which just started filming this month). The oddsmakers all said Idris should be next. The rumors grew and grew and Idris has even talked about it in interviews, saying he would be up for the gig but no one has ever approached him. Well, here’s something interesting: the Sony Hack has revealed that Amy Pascal also thinks Idris should be the next Bond!

Plenty of the Sony emails have focused on Sony’s prized horse—the James Bond franchise, including the 24th Bond flick Spectre, scheduled to hit theaters on November 6, 2015. Reports have indicated that the script has leaked, the film’s budget ballooned to over $300 million, and that it may feature Blofeld as the villain.

For years, there’s been a lot of online chatter suggesting that Idris Elba, the suave British actor, should be the next James Bond—making him the first black 007.

Current superspy Daniel Craig has even voiced his desire to vacate the post, telling Rolling Stone in 2012, “I’ve been trying to get out of this from the very moment I got into it. But they won’t let me go, and I’ve agreed to do a couple more, but let’s see how this one does, because business is business and if the sh-t goes down, I’ve got a contract that somebody will happily wipe their ass with.” Craig is signed on for just one more Bond flick after Spectre.

When The Daily Beast spoke to Jamie Foxx earlier this year, coincidentally for the Sony flick The Amazing Spider-Man 2, he said he was a big fan of the idea of a martini-sipping Elba. “I ran into Idris and I said, ‘You know you’re the motherf–kin’ James Bond, right?’” Elba himself has admitted he’d love to play the role if offered.

It seems Sony Pictures Entertainment co-chairman Amy Pascal is a big fan of the idea, too.

An email sent on January 4, 2014, from Pascal to Elizabeth Cantillon, former executive vice president of production for Columbia Pictures, which distributes the Bond films, simply says, “Idris should be the next bond.”

[From The Daily Beast]

I had to look it up, because I actually thought Daniel and Idris were the same age, but they’re not. Daniel is 46 (he’ll be 47 next March) and Idris just turned 42. That might not seem like a huge age difference, but when you’re expecting an actor to do that kind of bulking up and physical training and on-camera stunt work, it does matter. Pierce Bronsnan did his last Bond role in 2002, when he was 49 years old. A good cut-off point does seem to be at 50 years old. So… I’ve never been opposed to the idea of Idris as Bond, but they have to get on it. SOON. Like, line up Idris as Daniel Craig’s replacement now. And maybe Idris would have time to do two or three Bond films before he had to hang up his Walther PPK.

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Photos courtesy of WENN.

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74 Responses to “Sony Hack: Idris Elba should play James Bond next, says Amy Pascal”

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  1. tifzlan says:

    YAS GAWD

    • Nicole says:

      All is forgiven Amy Pascal. Let this woman keep her job so she can make this happen.

      • aims says:

        I second that. He’s a sexy mo fo and lord knows he would be great.

      • phlyfiremama says:

        First time I’ve actually been on her side in this whole debacle. ;) Girlfriend better put her big girl panties on, and face this challenge like a WOMAN!! AMY PASCAL: Don’t let them railroad you out. In fact with all the traction you now have with women who didn’t even know who you are before the hacking, or had any idea that there is only 1 top female at Sony & she is paid far less than her male colleagues, you will have a unique opportunity to ensure MORE women keep getting better & better positions. Now that the spotlight is fully on Sony for its systematic/ systemic sexual and ethnical discriminatory practices they will need to desperately fix their image: not by firing or reducing your role but by becoming more diverse in their upper level staffing and board. The future is hear, can Sony still hear it???

      • BooBooLaRue says:

        Yes for this alone, Y-E-S!

    • denisemich says:

      +1. Idris makes me so happy. He is sex on a stick.

    • Suzanne says:

      DOUBLE YES GAWD!

    • Jen says:

      Yes please he is so freakin hot!

    • phlyfiremama says:

      YES GAWD PAHLEEEZZZEE!

    • Jh says:

      Exactly- pleeeeaaase let this happen. He is all Bond swagger and hotness. Gah!!

  2. Lilliputian says:

    Sorry but the studio that thinks that Denzel Washington shouldnt helm films (even though a badly performing Equalizer still made $200,000,000 with close to half of that made overseas) was NEVER going to hire a black Bond.

  3. Anaya says:

    If Daniel Craig has been trying to get out of playing James Bond since he got into it then why did he sign on to do 2 more? The money I assume. I’d love for Idris to be the next Bond. I think the role is his. It’s just a matter of signing a contract.

    • Esmom says:

      Yeah, I thought that was pretty ungracious-sounding of Craig.

      • funcakes says:

        Agreed. Plus he always come off as smug and entitled. He should really remember it’s not him but the legend of Bond that made his star rise. After it’s over he’s going to find that out the hard way.

      • Irishae says:

        Agreed. I love Idris Elba in every and all things, so I hope it happens for him. I’ve enjoyed Daniel Craig as Bond, but he’s a snob with no reason to be. Except for the Bond movies, his commercial filmography sucks pretty hard (Cowboys & Aliens, Dream House, The Invasion…).

      • funcakes says:

        You’re right. Someone should send him a list of his IMDB and highlight all the bad movies. Take a lesson from George Lazenby.

    • LAK says:

      You have to look at this from the trajectory and acting background of Craig. He was a very well respected actor in serious well respected, if little seen, productions and theatre.

      Signing up for BOND was a sell out and he’s had to live it down ever since.

      The problem is that he’s been a very good BOND so everyone loves him, but for a serious actor like him, it’s a sell out especially because it is the very definition of painting by the numbers film making ie with the right elements, whoever plays BOND is almost irrelevant especially when you consider how often they’ve swopped him out.

      He definitely enjoys the money and prestige, but from an acting thespian perspective, BOND his signing on would be on the level of DDL signing on to do BOND.

      And before anyone says DC can’t be compared to DDL, you have to look at the work outside of BOND. The closest DDL has come to an action role is in LAST OF THE MONICANS. The point being that DC was doing fine artistically speaking even though he wasn’t a star. DDL wasn’t DDL for a long time. He had time to develop, and even he can’t always give good performances every single time – see NINE or that film directed by his wife.

      He is being disingenuous because clearly he wanted to be a star otherwise why sign on, but he has taken a hit as a result of BOND.

      And Hollywood (blaming this one on his agent) doesn’t know what to make of him outside BOND because many of the Hollywood films he has made since he became BOND *are* crap. His smaller indie films do well, artistically if not commercially, and he always receives excellent reviews whenever he treads the boards.

      • Delueth says:

        Lmfao. LAK has NOT seen the Cowboys v Alliens. This man is no Artiste. He is pretentious windbag who thinks we dont know his filmography.

      • Bridget says:

        I’m sorry, I have to strongly disagree with you there. DDL’s earlier filmography and Daniel Craig’s have utterly no comparison. DC’s smaller Indies usually feature him in a supporting part where someone else is doing the heavy lifting, and to this day I don’t get what was supposed to be so special about Layer Cake.

      • LAK says:

        Deuleth: what part of ‘his hollywood films *are* crap’ did you not understand? COWBOYS & ALIENS is a hollywood film, no?

        Bridget: LAYERCAKE was special because up to that point, he’d played really rough characters. It was a star making role for him because it showcased his ability to play a smooth character. Something he’d never played before.

        BTW: fun fact LAYERCAKE is what got him the BOND gig. he wasn’t in consideration at all until that film.

        I beg to differ regarding DC’s early filmography. Have you seen THE MOTHER?

        He was also brilliant in a tv show called ‘our friends in the North’

      • Bridget says:

        I actually knew that Layer Cake was what got Craig the Bond role. And it isn’t to say that Craig hadn’t done anything decent, but to compare his CV to DDL’s? I strongly disagree. It’s one thing to say that Daniel Craig is often under valued as an actor, its another to compare him to a triple Oscar winner with one of the strongest filmographies around.

      • LAK says:

        Bridget: i’m comparing his pre- BOND CV and his theatre work. NOT his current Hollywood career which is completely sub-par and doesn’t speak to his talent.

      • Bridget says:

        I totally get that. But still, pre-Bond Daniel Craig filmography doesn’t even compare to pre-Last of the Mohicans (to use the movie you chose as the equivalent) of Daniel Day Lewis. And I now feel like a total and complete nerd for even splitting hairs like this.

      • Grant says:

        I disagree. I hardly think that everyone loves DC as Bond. He was a controversial choice from the get-go because of his blonde coif and his curmudgeonly demeanor and the lackluster response to his films, Quantum of Solace in particular, certainly haven’t won him any additional fans.

  4. Izzy says:

    YES. This needs to happen right now!!

  5. Laura says:

    Ooooh! This would make me want to see the next Bond movie. Yes, please!

  6. Megan says:

    Oh yes! He would be amazing as Bond!!!!

  7. Luca76 says:

    I’m so there but I’ll believe it when I see it.

  8. Mia4S says:

    Not going to happen. Skyfall made a billion dollars and Craig has one more movie afte Spectre. So at the earliest a new Bond would start filming in about 2019. Elba would be 46.

    Honestly he doesn’t fit Bond for me. If your looking for a black British Bond I think Chiwetel Ejiofor is a superior choice. Younger too.

    • funcakes says:

      When I read your first paragraph I wad like,”What?!”. But when you mentioned Chiwetel I now think that’s genius. I forgot all about him. He’s s wonderful actor and should see more of him. Plus Idris has been in everything it seems. Time for a change.

      • lrm says:

        OH, Chiwetel would be amazing. He’s naturally so graceful and understated but packs a punch in terms of presence, at the same time.
        I think Idris could do it, it would just be a different take on Bond. Either would be great.

    • Sixer says:

      Much as I love Idris, I’m not persuaded of his 007 credentials either. Ejiofor or David Oyelowo would be better choices. Or even Eamonn Walker or David Harewood. I’m not persuaded that Idris could really play posh.

      • LAK says:

        When the idea of a black BOND was first floated, the forerunner was Colin Salmon. I think his small role in DIE ANOTHER DAY was a tester like Ralph Fiennes was a tester in the last BOND.

        Unfortunately for him MGM which held the franchise at that point started to have financial issues together with Gordon Brown changing the nature of UK financing so BOND was put on the back burner as all this crapfest was sorted out.

        And by the time it was sorted out, JASON BOURNE had come out thus changing the landscape of secret agent films, so BOND had to be rethought completely.

        The first BOND with Daniel Craig isn’t the smooth, suave DNA of an agent that we’d come to love. It’s closer to the Jason Bourne imagining of an agent than the Martini swirling, suave sophisticate of the other bond films.

        The good news, Martinis are making their way back into the current bond! :)

      • Sixer says:

        Oh, yes! He would have been great.

      • Bridget says:

        The action genre had been changing prior to the Jason Bourne movies – Pierce Brosnan chafed at the jokey, hokey direction of the Bond movies and lobbied to make them more serious, whereas the Broccoli’s were dead set on that direction until it was completely obvious that it was outdated.

    • Green Girl says:

      I had never thought of Chiwetel for this role before, but I like this idea A LOT.

    • claire says:

      Whoaaaa. Nice suggestion! Chiwetel as Bond would be amazing.

    • phlyfiremama says:

      Bond is all about the SEXY, which is not a trait Ejifor has. (for me at least) Idris is SEXY, Ejifor isn’t. ;)

      • Mixtape says:

        Yes, this! Let’s face it–the Bond character is kind of dated, yet the films are set in modern times. You have to be capable of playing a smart, strong, ruthless womanizing cad that the audience will still root for (and swoon over). For me, Idris has these qualities, but Chiwetel and the other suggestions do not.

        For anyone who can’t imagine Idris in the role, go watch Luther on Netflix. Luther is essentially a down-and-out Bond without the fancy gadgets, dealing with local crime instead of international affairs.

  9. Kate says:

    I love all of Idris’ work. This would make me VERY happy. C’mon, Sony, pull your heads out of your asses!

  10. lisa2 says:

    I doubt it is going to happen. They could make the transition by having him in one of the films. BOND after all is a “character” ; meaning that James Bond is a pseudonym IIRC..(correct me if wrong).

    so having Idris in a film as an agent who later becomes “Bond” could work.. but again I’m just speculating.

    • OriginalTessa says:

      007 is the character, James Bond is a person. You can call anyone 007… not really James Bond.

      • lisa2 says:

        Thanks.. I couldn’t recall how it went..

        I haven’t read the series.. I thought James Bond was just a name the character took..

        now I know. :)

      • LAK says:

        Lisa2: all the agents are given a number at MI6. Technically, no one is supposed to know any of their real names unless they have high level clearance eg M (head of the service) and Q ( the techy whiz guy forever finding genius ways to arm the agents. Ditto that’s also why we don’t know M or Q’s real names.

        The other characters that he interacts with on assignment, who are his enemies, aren’t to know that ‘James Bond’ isn’t a pseudonym. They might know that agent No 007 has been sent to get them, but have no idea what he looks like or who he is.

        From that perspective, agent 007 can be replaced. Ditto M and Q.

        In the upcoming BOND, M is going to be played by Ralph Fiennes who is taking over from Judy Dench.

  11. Veronica says:

    Something from the Sony hack that doesn’t contribute to our overwhelming sense of social misanthropy? Color me impressed.

    Also: I’m all for it.

  12. Ginger says:

    Don’t rely on age as a parameter for an action star since Liam Neeson is 62 and has a whole new career starring in action roles. That being said, I’d LOVE to see Idris Elba play Bond!

    • funcakes says:

      I’ve watch Liam career since he started off as a character on Miami Vice. I never thought of him as sexy but just a good actor. Ever since Taken I see him as nothing but sexy. :)

    • lrm says:

      I know and RDJ is in his 50′s as Iron Man, plus most of those super heroes lately are in their 40′s-Ruffalo, Affleck, Renner. Bond always strikes me as around 50 years old, actually. He’s old enough to know better, which makes him smart enough to do what he does. Debonaire is not a young guy’s characteristic, usually.

  13. vauvert says:

    I loved Craig as Bond, I thought he was awesome! For some reason I can’t see Idris as Bond. I know everyone thinks he is hot and everything, but I just don’t see it. And his off screen persona somehow grates on me. ( hiding now before I get laughed out of town.)
    Also I like the way they made Bond more ruthless than suave… They should stick with it, instead of going back to the more refined version. If Bond truly grew up poor orphan, not posh, that should come through.
    You know who I would like? Collin Farrell would be great in that role. (I know, I know, white… But can you imagine him??)

  14. HoustonGrl says:

    F*ck yea!!!!

  15. Q says:

    Gawd yes!!!!!!

  16. Lucy2 says:

    I think he’d be great in the role. Finally something not horrible or offensive from the hacking.
    Also, I think Roger Moore maybe? played Bond into his 50s.

  17. minx says:

    Yes, yes, yes.

  18. jinni says:

    Oh how convenient after it’s been coming out that she has said racist things all of a sudden they’ve found an email with her praising Idris. Puhleese, do they really think people are going to believe that a studio that thought Denzel Washington, who has already successfully been the lead in movies, not just domestically but internationally, couldn’t open a movie overseas thinks that Idris could be Bond?

    This seems more like Sony leaked this themselves to make Pascal look less racist. Also, who cares if she thinks he could be Bond when who gets to be Bond is ultimately up to Ms. Broccoli.

    • Jayna says:

      Where was it Sony and, specifically, Amy Pascal? It was a producer stating his belief, neither of the heads of Sony. An R-rated movie made 191 million and the predictions weren’t that high before it opened. This producer may have thought the foreign grosses should have been higher, but he has no idea if the movie could ever have made that much domestically without Denzel and the director, who it was reviewed have great chemistry having worked together before. I’m pretty sure the heads of Sony were ecstatic over such a huge profit. Liam Neeson’s R-rated thriller for another studio out right about the same time within a week of each other did far less, under 100 million and that was probably expected to do more.

  19. Aminta says:

    Yesssss

  20. INeedANap says:

    Wasn’t Roger Moore way past 50 for some of his roles? To be fair, he looked kind of ridiculous after a while.

    I’m on board for this bloke! Does he count as a bloke?

  21. FLORC says:

    I’m in the minority here (on this site) with this, but I think he’d be a bad bond.
    He plays a villian well enough and history pieces. Bond though? I see this flopping. Sure there would be his fanbase but he wouldn’t appeal outside of that select group. Could he appeal to men and a british spy? Not just the ladies who find him attractive?
    Bond Villian, yes. Bond, no.

    And I smell a rat with many others here. Post Denzel thought this Idris news comes out? Not buying it.

    • Jayna says:

      These are leaks from the same source releasing portions at a time. So Sony has nothing to do with any of these leaks. It’s coming from the hackers who have consistently been releasing e-mails and other info.

      By the way, Sony is the one who put out the Denzel Washington movie and approved him in it. It was one producer who made that observation in that e-mail, not Sony as a collective and neither of the heads of Sony, Michael Lynton nor Amy Pascal..

      I think Idris would be an amazing Bond. Villian? I find him gorgeous but also very charming and sophisticated, thus, a great Bond.

    • I think Idris could do both. I saw No Good Deed, and he was charming, cool–right up until he snapped. If they were gonna go for an even ‘darker’ Bond (pun not intended), he’d be their guy. But that’d also work for a villain.

  22. ellesbelles says:

    He came on my radar via thor, which prompted me to check out his other work. Hes really great, and I hope he gets more and more opportunities for success

  23. pepper says:

    Beautifully said. Thanks.
    I am not white myself. I do like many black actors. But this would be a big no for me.

    Why take a guy who is already well into his 40s anyways.. by the time he takes after Daniel and his first movie gets released he will be in 45 or 46 and it will be time to look for another actor RME.

    I made my response to another post and I see that it got removed ???

  24. kri says:

    wow, Daniel Craig is so not an ass-kisser. I would love to see Idris be Bond. Oh, man. The shivers!!!! yesss.

  25. lrm says:

    Regardless of who said what, these gossip boards have been suggesting Idris for a loooong time. I bet studios and actors do check to see what internet fans might want [even if it is a smaller group of fans that are online commenting].
    That said, I don’t even care about Bond movies, and I barely see one movie a year in theaters, and I’d go see Idris in this. I haven’t even seen him in anything [lol] but he’s just so charismatic and suave in pics, he’s totally Bond, IMO. I hope they do it.

    For Bond franchise, it will also be a way to broaden their demographic globally. So it’s bottom line related, like everything in h-wood, not about diversity per se.

    • ava7 says:

      How exactly would it broaden their demographic globally? Bond films have been doing extremely well overseas since Craig became Bond. In fact, it made much more in overseas markets than domestically.

  26. Sofia says:

    *happy dance over here* \o/

    That would make me REALLY want to see the next 007 films. He is great, intense, good looking and would give a fresh approach to the franchise. HA and they say (someone from sony) that black actors are not that loved outside of USA?… That guy doesn’t deserve his salary, so out of touch!

  27. Florence says:

    Idris would make a great Bond.

    Daniel Craig sounds so ungrateful, he should stop complaining. No one forced him to sign that contract, and he diesnt have any memorable roles apart from the Bond movies

  28. ¡mire usted! says:

    As a black woman who was offended by the Pres. Obama comments, I don’t think Amy Pascal should fired from Sony. News reports say she may be removed in early 2015. I love the idea of Idris being Bond but I think Daniel Craig is a great Bond and the guy brought in a billion dollars as Bond! Maybe Idris could be a hot villain? LOL Happy Holidays Celebitches!

  29. Elizabeth says:

    I don’t know. They lost their chance with James Purefoy and now he’s too old. I doubt they could do it in time and I’m not in the Idris camp, anyway. Besides, I think Neil Jackson should be next.