Tom Hardy looking anxious at breakfast in Venom Let There Be Carnage.

It wouldn’t be a normal business day in the world of entertainment if the betting odds surrounding the next James Bond didn’t take an interesting turn. And recent events have definitely brought some interesting fortunes to light, as recurring 007 contender and Game of Thrones vet Richard Madden has seen his chances slashed in half. But this is Daniel Craig’s successor we’re talking about here, and Madden’s improved odds still see him facing off against Tom Hardy and a couple other perennial favorites.

Betting agency Coral (via The Scottish Sun) recently announced that the Eternals star’s odds shifted from an 8/1 to 4/1 chance that he’ll be the next man in the tuxedo. It’s an interesting twist of fate, as roughly around this time last year, Richard Madden was sitting at a 6/1 standing alongside Loki star and fellow frequent flyer on the winds of Bond rumors, Tom Hiddleston. Truly showing how the tides have turned, Madden’s likelihood of ordering a martini on screen have fluctuated, in the face of several front runners maintaining higher standings.

Three other recurring favorites, James Norton, Tom Hardy, and relative newcomer to the James Bond race Regé-Jean Page, have recently bottlenecked at a 3/1 standing according to Ladbrooks (via Asumetech.) For Norton and Hardy, this is pretty much second nature, as the respective of McMafia and Venom: Let There Be Carnage have been in that rarified air for some time. But for Page, whose recent departure from Netflix’s Bridgerton saw fans speculating he may be jockeying for a job at MI6, his maintained presence towards the top is still pretty new.

And then, of course, there’s the subject of other contenders like Outlander’s Sam Heughan popping up in the news every now and then. Whether it’s through audience polls favoring his chances, or his own deepfake showing just how much of a dead ringer he’d be for Roger Moore, Heughan is still making his own noise to keep himself in the running. Though, at the moment, it sounds like Richard Madden’s odds are at a better point in the race.

While it’s easy to get excited about the next James Bond that’ll fill the tuxedo after Daniel Craig departs after No Time To Die, it needs to be said that EON Productions won’t be making those decisions for some time. As Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson’s 007 empire is more concerned with releasing the 25th James Bond film into the world, we won’t see a choice made in the matter any time soon.

Pertaining to the matter of Richard Madden’s odds to become the next Bond, James Bond, even the actor himself has taken a bit of a hands off approach in the past. Flattered to even be a part of the conversation, Madden’s laissez-faire attitude has allowed him to stick around in this very circle for quite some time. And he’s even landed himself roles like that of Ikaris in Chloe Zhao’s Eternals, which we’ll get to see debut in theaters on November 5th. Depending on how well the reception for this upcoming Marvel movie happens to land, there’s a chance that Richard Madden’s hands may be tied by contractual obligations, much like past 007 Pierce Brosnan. Sit tight, folks, because this race isn’t over yet.

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