Gillian Anderson as James Bond? The English bred actor, of The X-Files and the BBC’s The Fall (and the current star of Broadway’s Streetcar Named Desire), has been thrown in the ring as a contender for the next wave of Bond films, thanks to a poster twirling around Twitter (above). She tweeted “It’s Bond, Jane Bond. Thanks for all the votes. (And sorry, don’t know who made poster but I love it!) #NextBond.” There’s already a petition to make this happen. As of this writing, 6,368 people have signed it.
Before we spill our lemon peel martinis and invite the fanboy wrath, it’s important to note that Idris Elba (The Wire, Luther, Beasts of No Nation) has endured rampant speculation for years about courting or being courted for the role once Daniel Craig steps aside (which he might despite being offered 68 million euros for two more films). White Brit Tom Hiddleston’s name has also been thrown in the mix, but it’s Jamie Bell (of dancey pants “Billy Elliot” fame) that’s most recently been in talks for the role. Given young Bell’s resemblance to Craig, it suggests the franchise may be taken into origin story territory.
Of both Anderson and Elba, Scott Mendelson smartly writes “I would rather (if I have to chose just one option) see these actors not fighting for one would-be action franchise but rather getting their own action franchises on (relatively) equal footing as the 007 series.” This rings more sensible, given that our nostalgia for Bond my be akin to our nostalgia for a lot of things that are bad for us that we still cling to, like misogyny and overdone franchises.
File this with the stacks of arguments for women and minorities to be given equal screen representation, in case Anderson and Elba’s charisma alone isn’t reason enough to give them their own iconic characters to play. Hell, we could even make them a team. If we’re going to have franchises, shouldn’t they be led by actors we can fall head over heels for? You can’t separate Indiana Jones from Harrison Ford, but years from now our current franchises and their shoe-fillers will be forgotten.