The next James Bond movie has been slightly delayed, but the movie is happening, and Daniel Craig will be back in the lead role. Of course, it seems quite likely that Craig will be done after this next film and whatever happens, at some point, sooner rather than later, Craig will be done playing Bond, but the role will certainly go on. The question of who the next James Bond will be will exist until there is one, and right now the odds on Cillian Murphy getting the role just got a lot better.
When I talk about the odds, I'm speaking quite literally, as I'm talking about bookmakers in Britain who actually do keep odds on who the next James Bond will be. Cillian Murphy had seen odds of 7/1 but those odds have just dropped to 100/30 (slightly worse than 3/1 if you don't want to do the math). He's not the front runner, but he's now in second place behind Tom Hiddleston and Richard Madden who both have 2/1 odds.
If there's a reason the odds have gotten so much better for Murphy, it's not entirely clear. His name has never been entirely absent from any conversation about the next James Bond. When Danny Boyle was set to direct the next film, but before Daniel Craig had agreed to return, Yahoo says Murphy's name had come up a possible replacement, but obviously it never came to that.
Murphy may be best known for playing the villain Scarecrow in Christopher Nolan's Batman Begins. He also had a role in Nolan's WWII epic Dunkirk and has had a successful TV run on the series Peaky Blinders.
Considering the time that it took to get Daniel Craig to commit to playing James Bond one more time, it seems likely this will be his last go-round as the super spy, though the film has not been announced to be his last. If he hasn't already told producers this is his last, then assume we'll all go through the "will he, won't he" one more time as Eon Productions tries to get him to do one more movie, before the producers even consider looking elsewhere.
Once we get there, however, there are a lot of interesting candidates. Everybody from Idris Elba to Tom Hardy has been rumored as a possible Bond in the past. Expect all of them to get thrown into the mix once again. Even an actor who might not have been a hot prospect a couple years ago when producers were last looking could be in a very different place a couple years from now when the hunt is on again. There will probably be some young actors who aren't even on our radar now who will also be contenders.
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