James Bond: Farewell, Daniel Craig, Hello Tom Hiddleston Or Aidan Turner?

James Bond, who are you going to be? The carousel is still running, and right now it’s a toss between Tom Hiddleston and Aidan Turner — in that order — although producer Barbara Broccoli might yet throw a wildcard. Although Daniel Craig confirmed as early as October 2015 that he will vacate the James Bond position, that didn’t seem to have helped in speeding up the selection of his replacement.

Of course, nobody wants Daniel Craig to leave as James Bond. After all, under his watch, the movie franchise has become more profitable than ever. As James Bond, Daniel Craig was a dark horse coming in, but a white horse coming out. Against all odds, Craig would prove his critics wrong by bringing an emotional intensity to the role that no one has seen before regarding the suave British assassin and spy all rolled into one.

Even Sean Connery, whom many have considered as the best James Bond ever, has been challenged by Daniel Craig’s work on four James Bond movies. Craig would one-up Connery by portraying a more credible Bond that blends in as a spy instead of standing out. Craig’s appointment to the role in 2005 came as a big surprise to 007 fans.

According to The Week, Barbara Broccoli is highly likely to take another huge yet calculated risk. The source quotes James Bond director Sam Mendes, who directed two 007 movies during Craig’s reign as saying that the next James Bond will be a surprise. Mendes continues as follows:

“Barbara Broccoli chooses who’s going to be the next Bond: end of story. I can guarantee whatever happens with it, it will not be what you expect. That’s what she’s been brilliant at and that’s how it’ll survive.”

This statement conflicts with another close friend of the Broccolis: Caterina Murino who played Bond Girl Solange in Casino Royale. The following is what Murino says to Mirror.

“But I’m a huge fan of Tom’s [Hiddleston] work. I believe Barbara will pick someone like that who has a theater background.”

Further, according to Mirror, Murino has personally recommended Tom Hiddleston to the Broccolis.

So the question is, could Sam Mendes and Caterina Murino be referring to the same candidate for the James Bond role?

If so, Tom Hiddleston is the lucky guy. Contrary to rumors, Hiddleston has been rather low key (rhymes with Loki, the actor’s popular role in The Avengers movies). In their words, some quarters seem to have created the impression that Tom is acting as the presumptive James Bond candidate. Upon closer inspection, this cannot be further from the truth.

What is true in fact, is that Hiddleston has been rather self-effacing about whether or not he has the James Bond part. He even said that he does not think that any announcement is forthcoming with regard to his appointment to the role. If he gets the part at all, he might want to bring it up before the Broccolis if they would be interested in considering Taylor Swift for a Bond Girl role.

Tom Hiddleston and Taylor Swift hooked up recently after the latter broke up with dance music artist Calvin Harris, her boyfriend for 15 months. Tom and Taylor’s whirlwind romance has been the subject of much tabloid gossip lately. Mysteriously, pictures taken of the couple smooching in the park or rushing to board a jet plane seem to resemble scenes from an actual James Bond movie. This leads some media outfits to believe that their much-publicized love affair could be part of the publicity to snag the James Bond role for Tom Hiddleston.

Aside from Tom Hiddleston and Poldark’s Aidan Turner, the following are also in the running for the highly sought after James Bond role.

Mad Max star Tom Hardy, Luther actor Idris Elba, and Homeland’s Damian Lewis are also in the top five,” says The Week. If by any chance, nobody gets picked from any of the top five James Bond nominees, the producers might want to consider The Hobbit’s Luke Evans or Richard Armitage.

And so it appears that when it comes to playing the role of James Bond, there are many different possibilities. A shortage is not likely, so no worries. May the best man win.

[Photos by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP Images and Stuart C. Wilson/Getty Images]

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