Most actors who take on the role of James Bond usually pass on the torch to someone else after three or four films, while some stay shorter and others longer within the spy franchise. Daniel Craig, having played 007 since 2006 in Casino Royale seems to be quitting the role, or at least according to his negative comments about continuing after 2015’s Spectre release (he was quote saying he’d rather “slash his wrists” than make another Bond film). Now his good friend, actor Mark Strong, is also making a strong case for what the future may hold for the British star.
After Spectre, the distribution rights for the Bond franchise is up for grabs, which could be another reason for why Craig will not return, whether he wants to or not. Names have been thrown into the pile for possible future Bond actors that include Tom Hardy (The Revenant), Hugh Jackman (Wolverine), and Idris Elba (Beasts of No Nation), all of whom are rumored to be in possible consideration. Craig has four films to his belt, but so far he has not shown any eager motivation to take on the role again.
Strong discussed, in an interview with Short List, the possibilities of playing a Bond villain opposite his friend, a type of role that he’s known best for in his career:
Do you know what, I’d have loved to have played the villain in a Bond movie while Daniel was doing it because he’s a pal and that would have been great. But I think he’s come to the end of his Bond time and so it’s probably never going to happen, but that would have always been great.
Strong would be an interesting choice for the part, especially with the strong probable chemistry that he and Craig share. But, with those comments it seems like Craig may in fact be done with the role. If for somehow Strong was cast as the villain in the upcoming Bond 25, the tide could maybe change, but as of now, that does not appear to be the case. Craig has done well with the franchise’s massive fanbase both critically and financially, but with Spectre being a film that wrapped many loose ends up with Craig’s storyline, it wouldn’t be a particularly bad move for him to step down.