Idris Elba Gives A Definitive Answer To Those Persistent James Bond Rumours

The Luther actor has long been tipped to replace Daniel Craig in the role of 007.
Idris Elba at the Baftas in 2016
Idris Elba at the Baftas in 2016
Stuart C. Wilson via Getty Images

Idris Elba has been linked with the role of James Bond since before Daniel Craig even announced he was stepping down from the franchise.

With Daniel now having hung up his golden gun for good, speculation has been rife about his successor, with many pondering whether the Luther star will be taking up the mantle when 007 returns to our screens.

However, during a conversation with the World Government Summit in Dubai on Tuesday, Idris appeared to take himself out of the running once and for all after years of rumours.

Speaking about the upcoming film adaptation of Luther, Idris explained: “It’s very dark.

“We’ve been working on the television show for about 10 years and so the natural ambition is to take it to the big screen, and so we’re here with the first movie.”

Daniel Craig in the most recent James Bond film No Time To Die
Daniel Craig in the most recent James Bond film No Time To Die
via PA Features Archive/Press Association Images

Alluding to his character John Luther, the Golden Globe winner then added: “You know, a lot of people talk about another character that begins with ‘J’ and ends with ‘B’, but I’m not going to be that guy.

“I’m going to be John Luther. That’s who I am.”

Last year, James Bond producer Barbara Broccoli insisted that Idris’ name was “part of the conversation” about which actor would be play 007 next.

“We know Idris, we’re friends with him, and he’s a magnificent actor,” she added at the time.

Back in 2019, Idris appeared less keen at the prospect of playing James Bond, sharing that he felt “disheartened” by the racist reaction from some supposed fans of the films to rumours about him taking on the role.

“When you get people from a generational point of view going, ‘It can’t be.’ And it really turns out to be the colour of my skin,” he told Vanity Fair magazine.

“And then if I get it and it didn’t work, or it did work, would it be because of the colour of my skin? That’s a difficult position to put myself into when I don’t need to.”

Idris at Milan Fashion Week last month
Idris at Milan Fashion Week last month
Pietro S. D'Aprano via Getty Images

He continued: “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’.”


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