Anthony - who is currently at the helm of the ‘Bond’ book series, with his debut novel in the franchise hitting book shops next week - was met with accusations of racism for his comments, after he said: “For me Idris Elba is a bit too rough to play the part.
"It’s not a colour issue. I think he is probably a bit too ‘street’ for Bond. Is it a question of being suave? Yeah.”
He has since tweeted a statement, apologising to those who were offended by his remarks.
“I’m really sorry my comments about Idris Elba have caused offence”, he wrote on Tuesday evening. “In the article I express the opinion that to my mind Adrian Lester would be a better choice but I’m a writer not a casting director so what do I know?
“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 offence.”
In the past, Idris has made no secret of his desire to play James Bond, though earlier this year the 'Luther' star lamented he no longer believed it was a possibility.
Back In April he told a crowd at the British Film Institute in London: “If there was ever a chance of me getting Bond, it’s gone.
“Daniel Craig actually set the rumour off. About four years ago he said Idris Elba would be a great Bond and it started to creep. I blame Daniel.
Even though he now thinks he’ll never play the part, Idris hit back at claims he is not British enough for the role last year, insisting: “I was born here. I was born in England, born and raised.”