G   /   March 12, 2019   /   0 Comments

by Paul Chi
 
 
As Daniel Craig’s final James Bond adventure nears the start of production—and a newly announced release date of April 8, 2020—there are already numerous rumors about who might replace Craig as 007. Game of Thrones alum Richard Madden is speculated to be on the short list, while other reports have long linked Idris Elba to the role—though by now, Elba seems to have made his peace with the fact that he might never play Bond.

There’s even been talk on social media arguing that a woman should play the MI6 agent next, including from Elba himself: a future Bond “could be a woman—could be a black woman, could be a white woman,” he told Variety in 2018. “Do something different with it. Why not?” Actresses including Emilia Clarke, Priyanka Chopra, Gillian Anderson, and Elizabeth Banks have all indicated that they would happily take on a gender-swapped version of the role.

But Eva Green—the French actress who played Vesper Lynd, the Bond girl who broke the British super-spy’s heart in 2006’s Casino Royale—is against the idea of a female 007.

“I’m for women, but I really think James Bond should remain a man. It doesn’t make sense for him to be a woman,” said Green at the premiere of her latest movie, Disney’s Dumbo, in Hollywood on Monday night. “Women can play different types of characters, be in action movies and be superheroes, but James Bond should always be a man and not be Jane Bond. There is history with the character that should continue. He should be played by a man.”

Green echoed a point made previously by Rachel Weisz, who said in 2018 that she would not want to see a female Bond because original author Ian Fleming “devoted an awful lot of time to writing this particular character, who is particularly male and relates in a particular way to women.” Instead, Weisz proposed, “Why not create your own story rather than jumping onto the shoulders and being compared to all those other male predecessors?” “Women are really fascinating and interesting, and should get their own stories,” she continued. And for the record, Bond producer Barbara Broccoli also agrees: “Bond is male,” she said flatly last year. “He’s a male character. He was written as a male and I think he’ll probably stay as a male.”

Although she’s not in favor of a Doctor Who-style gender swap, Green is proud to have helped to change the narrative of female characters in the Bond franchise, moving them from sexy damsels in distress to smart, assertive, and powerful figures.

“I love the fact that the Bond girls have evolved,” said Green, who plays a fearless, high-flying aerialist in Disney’s new live-action reimagining of its beloved 1941 animated tale. “I originally had reservations about being a Bond girl. I didn’t want to be a bimbo. The women are now perceived differently. They are intelligent and sassy and fascinating. I loved playing Vesper. She’s the only one to get to Bond’s heart and has a big impact on his life.”

Green will not reunite with Craig for his final go-around as 007, with director Cary Fukunaga helming the project. Still, she called him the most “iconic” and “visceral” actor to play Bond yet.

“He’s made James Bond human,” she said. “We see him flawed and vulnerable. He’s the best James Bond we have seen.”
 
 
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