A media news site mostly known for celebrity gossip, ‘Radar Online‘, has claimed Sony are offering Daniel Craig up to $150million to keep playing James Bond through to 2018.
Craig has often been vocal about his discomfort in the role. After the release of Spectre, Craig was quoted saying he’d “slash” his own wrists than return for a further film, and that it would “be only for money”.
However, despite these public comments from Bond himself, Sony doesn’t seem coy about their need to keep the 007 franchise as a secure tent-pole. Unlike the studio’s other franchises, such as Men In Black and various comedy sequels, Bond movies have been releasing steadily every couple of years for over a decade. Recasting the main role throws the security of the brand in to question, and as most movie goers have realised over the last few years … Risk taking isn’t exactly common in modern Hollywood.
Even with it’s tradition of recasting the lead role, Sony may see taking a chance on a new actor as less appealing than simply throwing money in Craig’s direction.
Audiences have always responded positively to Daniel Craig’s interpretation, perhaps best known for ‘Our Friends in the North‘ up until his 007 debut in Casino Royale. Front runners to succeed him are currently Aiden Turner of The Hobbit Trilogy and BBC’s Poldark and James Norton who has been seen in a TV adaptation of War and Peace and Netflix’s Happy Valley. Both younger, upcoming stars, known best for TV roles, much like Craig. Roger Moore and Pierce Brosnan were also known for robust TV careers before becoming Bond.
It may be for that reason then that Bookies consider both Aiden Turner and James Norton as more likely choices than Daniel Craig, with 5/11 odds each to his 8/11. However, those odds were posted prior to the figure of $150m built traction with media news sites. If sources at ‘Radar Online‘, are to be believed, Sony still clearly sees Daniel Craig as the only option until a perhaps more well known actor can step into the role.
It’s likely Sony won’t want to wait any longer that 2018 to see the next Bond released. With any luck we’ll have to concrete information about the decisions being made soon.