Hire another day: James Bond production company insist they haven't cast Aaron Taylor-Johnson as new 007

19 March 2024, 16:16

Hire another day: James Bond production company insist they haven't cast Aaron Taylor-Johnson as new 007
Hire another day: James Bond production company insist they haven't cast Aaron Taylor-Johnson as new 007. Picture: Alamy

By Christian Oliver

Speculation over the casting of James Bond continues to grow after production insiders denied Aaron Taylor-Johnson has been cast as 007.

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Taylor-Johnson, 33, who cut his teeth in films Bullet Train and Kick Ass, looked all but set to take on the role of the iconic MI6 agent Tuesday morning - ending years of speculation after Daniel Craig's exit in No Time to Die in 2021.

The Sun earlier reported that Taylor-Johnson had been "formally offered the opportunity to play James Bond" and was set to "sign his contract in the coming days".

But the production company behind the franchise now appears to have distanced themselves from the casting ahead of filming for the 26th movie which is scheduled to start filming later this year.

Aaron Taylor-Johnson in Bullet Train, 2022
Aaron Taylor-Johnson in Bullet Train, 2022. Picture: Alamy
Daniel Craig at the Bafta Awards, Royal Opera House
Daniel Craig at the Bafta Awards, Royal Opera House. Picture: Alamy

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A production insider has now spoken out saying there is "no truth to the rumours", they told BBC News.

Eon Productions, meanwhile, which makes the Bond franchise, said they would not comment on speculation.

It comes after Taylor-Johnson spoke out about the potential role earlier this month, telling Numero magazine it was "charming and wonderful that people see me in that role."

"I take it as a great compliment," he continued.

Taylor-Johnson's first major role was as a teenage John Lennon in Nowhere Boy. He met his future wife, the film's director Sam Taylor-Wood, onset, when he was 18 and she was 42. They married three years later.

He later appeared in Kick-Ass, Anna Karenina, Godzilla, Nocturnal Animals and Tenet, among several other film roles.

Taylor-Johnson is set to co-star with Ryan Gosling and Emily Blunt in action comedy The Fall Guy later this year.

It comes after Craig hung up his gun in 2021's No Time To Die, after taking his martinis shaken not stirred in Casino Royale, Quantum of Solace, Skyfall and Spectre.

Bond appeared to have been killed off at the end of the most recent film, so it is unclear where the next installation will take the spy.

Aaron Taylor Johnson attends the Madrid photocall for a Giorgio Armani show at Matadero Madrid on March 7
Aaron Taylor Johnson attends the Madrid photocall for a Giorgio Armani show at Matadero Madrid on March 7. Picture: Alamy

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Following The Sun's report, Entertainment journalist Caroline Frost told LBC: “This is close as film journalists have got it. The word on the wire does seem to be that this is the case. However, I'm not going to put too much money on it because, we have been here before for years in fact.

"We do know that this week, Aaron Taylor-Johnson is reported to have accepted an offer and that it's basically just a matter of weeks, if not months, before we will hear that the new film is in production.

"It does seem very likely and nobody is stepping forward to deny that this is the case and it's the strongest speculation yet".

Taylor Johnson has long been one of the bookmaker's favourites to take on the role, alongside former Superman star Henry Cavill

"I would love to play Bond, it would be very, very exciting," Cavill told GQ magazine in 2020. It is thought the Mission Impossible actor had been in the running for the role before Craig was cast.

Happy Valley villain James Norton and Snowfall actor Damson Idris have also been muted for the role.

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