James Bond Should Never Be Played by a Woman, Bond Girl Says
"There’s no need for a female Bond," a No Time to Die star said.
Long before Daniel Craig's final movie as James Bond was finally released, there was talk about who the next actor to take on the role should be. Questions including whether the actor should be British, white, or a man—as has mostly been the case so far—have all been part of the conversation. The idea of casting a woman as James Bond has come up frequently, and it seemed like a step in that direction to have a woman 007 in the most recent film. But some people involved in the franchise have spoken out against the push to change the gender of the lead character, including a recent Bond girl. Read on to find out why she doesn't think Bond should ever be played by a woman and what other stars have had to say on the topic.
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The franchise's first woman 007 was harassed on social media.
In the most recent Bond movie, No Time to Die, Black British actor Lashana Lynch played Nomi, an agent who was assigned Bond's 007 number, but she was not replacing Bond himself.
"The response was generally positive, but there were some very personal messages to me, like Insta DMs and Twitter," Lynch told The Guardian of the casting news being released. "And just conversations that my friends had heard or overheard on the tube that were really mean, dark, and reminiscent of an age I wasn't even born in, where women and Black people weren't allowed to move in certain spaces. So it also reminded me about the work that I still have to do to try to change the world in a little way that I know how."
As for the actors who've played James Bond, all have been white men, and all have been British, except for Australian George Lazenby and Irish Pierce Brosnan.
A recent Bond girl isn't on board for a woman Bond.
Ana de Armas played Bond girl Paloma in last year's No Time to Die. In a new interview with The Sun, the Knives Out star explained why she's not in favor of a woman being cast in the lead role.
"There's no need for a female Bond," de Armas said. "There shouldn't be any need to steal someone else's character, you know, to take over. This is a novel, and it leads into this James Bond world and this fantasy of that universe where he's at."
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She wants to see more representation in other ways.
Instead of a woman being cast as Bond, de Armas would like to see the women who are in the action movies get more interesting and varied roles. While many classic Bond girls were merely damsels or sex objects, recent films in the series have moved away from that tradition.
"What I would like is that the female roles in the Bond films, even though Bond will continue to be a man, are brought to life in a different way,"de Armas said. "That they're given a more substantial part and recognition. That's what I think is more interesting than flipping things."
Craig agrees with her.
Craig also spoke out about the casting question and shared similar thoughts.
"The answer to that is very simple," Craig told Radio Times in 2021. "There should simply be better parts for women and actors of color. Why should a woman play James Bond when there should be a part just as good as James Bond, but for a woman?"
Similarly, longtime Bond movie producer Barbara Broccoli told The Guardian in 2018, "Bond is male. He's a male character. He was written as a male and I think he'll probably stay as a male." She added, "And that's fine. We don't have to turn male characters into women. Let's just create more female characters and make the story fit those female characters."
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But Lynch thinks Bond could be anyone.
In her interview with The Guardian, Lynch shared a more open view.
"We are in a place in time where the industry is not just giving audiences what it thinks the audience wants," she said. "They're actually giving the audience what they want to give the audience. With Bond, it could be a man or woman. They could be white, Black, Asian, mixed race. They could be young or old. At the end of the day, even if a two-year-old was playing Bond, everyone would flock to the cinema to see what this two-year-old's gonna do, no?"
As for whether she should be Bond, Lynch laughed and said, "Nooo! You don't want me! I'd just be like, 'Erm, right, so where do you start again?'"