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Naomie Harris Says Idris Elba Met w/ '007' Producer & A Black James Bond Is A Possibility. Hmm...

by Courtney
October 23, 2012 9:20 PM
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I lifted this segment from a longer interview that Naomie Harris did with Huffington Post (press tour for Skyfall), published on their website earlier today. The question was asked about the possibility of a black James Bond eventually. And this was Naomie's response:

I didn’t realize that there was this talk and then I did a film with Idris [Elba] and he said that he met Barbara Broccoli [James Bond producer] and that it does seem like there is a possibility in the future that there could very well be a black James Bond. And I would have to vote for Idris because I just finished working with him and he’s a great guy.

She doesn't say what Idris met with Barbara Broccoli about specifically, other than to add that it does seem like there is a possibility in the future of a black James Bond, suggesting that the meeting between Idris and Broccoli may have included discussion of a black James Bond at some point.

And as for whether Idris will be the guy, if that happens, well, again, considering Naomie's statement, we could also surmise that there might be interest from both sides - Elba and Broccoli.

And it would make sense; if the producers do decide to go down that path, Idris would be a really good choice. He has the looks, the charm, the build (especially since the shift to a more rugged James Bond, with Daniel Craig), and, to top it all off, he's British!

I can see him as a continuation of this new-age 007.

But if it is to happen, it wouldn't be any time soon, since Craig is signed up for 2 more James Bond movies (after Skyfall). And given that, since the franchise under the Broccoli production era began in 1962, the company has produced a new James Bond film about every 2 years. Although there was a 4 year gap between the last one, and Skyfall

But if that every-two-years trend continues, Craig's reign would continue through, at least, 2016 - 4 years from now - which means if the plan is then for a black Bond to replace him, the black Bond film wouldn't happen before 2018. Again, if the 1-film-every-2-years trend continues.

So 8 years from now. 

And assuming it's Idris, he'll be 48 years old by then; a seasoned age to begin your Bond career. Daniel Craig is 44 right now. When he started, he was 38; when Sean Connery started, he was 32; Roger Moore was 46; Pierce Brosnan was 42. And the others were all either in their early 40s or 30s.

Of course it could be some other younger actor.

But all of this is pure speculation anyway, until we know with certainty that Broccoli is definitely considering a near-future black Bond era.

It's fun to speculate though! Conversations of a black Bond have been had for years now. 

Finally, one other interesting thing that Naomie said in the interview is that, she didn’t know Idris Elba was British, until she started to work with him.

She said...

I thought he was an American based on his role on “The Wire.” [Laughs]

Hilarious! Maybe I'm being too presumptuous, but I would've thought that black British actors would be a close-knit circle - especially the bigger names. Or they'd at least know of one another.

You can read the full interview HERE.

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  • Lou | October 25, 2012 2:15 PMReply

    I think that Elba IS leading man material, but not for 007. His skin colour would make him a very conspicuous British secret agent indeed. 'I saw a black man talking with the Mujiahiddin chief of the Hindu Kush region'; 'F**k, it's probably James Bond'. Daft idea.

  • Donella | October 25, 2012 6:48 PM

    And yet, as someone pointed out below, Roger Moore managed to conquer both Harlem and Haiti in Live and Let Die.

  • JAMESAP | October 25, 2012 12:07 PMReply

    Well, even if it remains a rumor, it seems N. Harris just said that because she's black too. Feels like there's always this willing of being a part of the "big game", for some community rights' fights of old ages. And it's not fair and nice for Craig, who's still in the game for our greatest pleasure. So, no offence, but James Bond must stay Caucasian, for he represents the finest part of the white Western society; the one that is extremely elegant, that entertains close links with governments, etc. are Harry Potter and Captain America black? No. Is Big Mama white? No either. Why? Because there are iconic characters. Well, Jame's too.

  • Adam Scott Thompson | October 24, 2012 8:20 PMReply

    A black Bond would bring down U.S. box-office returns (just sayin'). At least bring in a strong black antag for the next installment. Someone who'll kick JB's ass like Bane did Batman.

  • Firebrand | October 24, 2012 11:43 PM

    @Miles Ellison - LOL!

  • Miles Ellison | October 24, 2012 10:38 PM

    Like Yaphet Kotto (Mr. Big) did in Live and Let Die?

  • Orville | October 24, 2012 5:41 PMReply

    Shadow and Act editors just LOVE Idris Elba even though he is NEVER going to be a big star in Hollywood. Idris is not leading man material as other posters have pointed out. Idris is a solid actor but he is not that attractive and he is 40 years old. Time for Hollywood to focus the attention on younger and more handsome black male actors like Anthony Mackie.

  • ALM | October 24, 2012 9:57 PM

    @ Orville: So age and your opinion of his looks disqualifies him from being a leading man? Wow......just wow. Also, I like Mackie. Mackie is charming and has a great personality. In fact I like Mackie's work so much that I saw a couple of movies last year mainly based on the fact that he had a supporting role in the film, but Mackie > Elba? Wow....just wow.

  • Helluva | October 24, 2012 9:25 PM

    This dude love some Anthony Mackie...

  • Jerome | October 24, 2012 7:00 PM

    Why is it important for Idris Elba to be a 'big hollywood star'? Do you believe that if actors aren't 'big hollywood stars' that makes them unsuccessful?

  • Lauren | October 24, 2012 6:09 PM'd be hard pressed to find a hetero female who finds Mr Mackie sexier than Mr Elba... are you kidding?!?!

  • D.C. Kirkwood | October 24, 2012 2:53 PMReply

    I like Idris Elba, but he isn't leading man material. Especially for the Bond series. Idris can not carry a box office film by himself as a lead. They are not going to put that type of budget behind him because the film will be a flop and a big stain on his career. Playing Luther on TV successfully doesn't not necessarily transfer over the the commercial film side. Sorry it would be a mistake.JMO

  • NOT SO FAST | October 25, 2012 12:39 AM

    " If you want to go into past accomplishments there are still tons of Hollywood actors who have little to no past accomplishments and are given starring roles" AGAIN... LIST THEM! ONE MORE TIME BECAUSE YOU'RE OBVIOUSLY CLOSING YOUR EYES. "you can run but you can't hide... Just compare Idris' career to those on your list. WHAT WERE THEIR PAST "ACCOMPLISHMENTS" PRIOR TO THEIR ALLEGED TONS OF FLOPS? If that's hard to understand because you're vision is blurred by the actor's skin color, think of Eddie Murphy. He has had many "flops" so why has he been given many chances? Easy answer: In films, as a leading man, HE had proven his-self to be a money maker. Please Alm, accept the truth. Idris is not a proven commodity and Hollywood is not a charity.

  • ALM | October 24, 2012 10:49 PM

    @ Not So Fast- No, you stop. If you want to go into past accomplishments there are still tons of Hollywood actors who have little to no past accomplishments and are given starring roles. Actors CAN NOT live off of the backs of their PAST ACCOMPLISHMENTS forever. They are supposed to be creating revenue. Point blank, Idris needs to be provided the same opportunity to lead multiple films as all of these other actors are. Film studios are losing money on several "A" list actors, yet these actors still work and draw multi-million dollar checks. If you don't like Idris, it's your right. The actors I listed (and tons of other actors) have had plenty of flops. If it was just about money, Hollywood would have written off Aniston, Hudson and Cage LONG ago. You still have yet to list the qualities that qualify a leading man.

  • Not So Fast | October 24, 2012 10:23 PM

    Stop if ALM, I know you're "young" (maybe born prior to In Living Color's premiere) but it was on a major network, seen by millions of Americans, not just "African American homes". And please, you're still dodging ( or consciously forgetting) the major point of comparing the white actors on your list. WHAT WERE THEIR PAST "ACCOMPLISHMENTS" PRIOR TO THEIR ALLEGED TONS OF FLOPS? Alm, you can run but you can't hide, your ambiguous rebuttal is not supporting your argument in any form or fashion. Just compare Idris' career to those on your list. What were they bringing to the table that persuaded "Hollywood" to give them another chance? It wasn't their skin color because we all know Hollywood is about money and thousands of white actors are dumped every day. What's so confusing about that?

  • ALM | October 24, 2012 9:55 PM

    @ No So Fast- I did not answer my own question. Prior to "Ray", Jamie did not have a huge following in the Caucasian realm. He was a household name in African American homes based on his self titled show and his work on "In Living Color". He was just beginning to be well known through supporting roles for Tom Cruise and Will Smith. As for the list of actors who have had multiple starring roles that flopped, see the careers of Jennifer Anniston, Kate Hudson, Nicholas Cage.....shall I continue? Yes, all three have been in movies that did well, but all three have TONS of flops in which they were paid hefty salaries. The first two ladies actually probably have twice as many flops as they have hit movies, yet HOLLYWOOD keeps giving them starring roles. Where is the confusion? With all of your comments, neither you nor D C Kirkwood has listed the qualities that qualify a leading man.

  • Helluva | October 24, 2012 9:35 PM

    He's as much "leading man material" as the height-challenged Daniel Craig or Robert Downey Jr. Come on. Now you may be right that "they" won't provide much of a budget for ya boy but it's not 'cause Elba couldn't pull it off. Hollywood gate-keepers don't seem to have much interest in creating black male heroes or mythology on-screen (generally speaking). There's Denzel plus a few brothers who came up immediately following Spike's breakthrough, and that's it.

  • Not So Fast | October 24, 2012 6:37 PM

    @ ALM, with your reference of Jamie Foxx, you've answered your own question. Prior to "Ray", Jamie had a huge following, both white and black, thus, his face and name were instantly recognizable. Idris, on the other had, IS NOT a household name. Sure, he was in the "Wire" and he is presently in Luther, but the fact remains, those series are viewed by a limited audience. In respect to "other" actors being given multiple chances, surely you can support your opinion by listing those actors and drawing a parallel of their past careers and Idris', right? If not, your opinion is based on wishful thinking, not sound business decisions. Seriously, what would be the purpose and the motive of giving a 40 year old black man multiple chances? We're talking millions of dollars, not community theater. So again, bring back your list of ALL those "other actors in Hollywood" and then you will have something to talk about, that makes - good business sense.

  • Jerome | October 24, 2012 4:41 PM

    Idris Elba isn't leading man material?!! Glad I noticed that before I watched watching Luther or Legacy.

  • ALM | October 24, 2012 3:10 PM

    @ D.C. Kirkwood: I keep hearing this generic critique that Idris "isn't leading man material". What are your qualifications for leading man material? Please provide a list. Thank you :) Also, if people are never given the opportunity to do something how do we know what they can do? See Jamie Foxx in "Ray" for a reference point. You and a couple of other people on here act as if Idris as led 5 or 6 movies that flopped, and that is not the case. Other actors in Hollywood are given multiple chances to "get it right" with regard to the box office, so why can't Idris be afforded the same opportunity?

  • Firebrand | October 24, 2012 2:33 PMReply

    America wouldn't accept a black James Bond. Think about it. Besides, shouldn't we be pushing for original projects starring black actors instead of wanting them to play established white characters? There's some hypocrisy going on here. I'd rather see a Luther movie series than more Bond films any day.

  • CareyCarey | October 25, 2012 4:47 PM

    @ Helluva, whatsup man... to relegate Will Smith to "just" a likable ex-rapper & sitcom actor prior to "Independence Day", might be a wee bit of minimizing. At the very least, in the context of this argument, it is moving the goal post. Lets keep in mind that Mr. Never Assume implied a comparison between Idris and Will. That comparison starts with Will's age, his past record of making money in Hollywood and his overall exposure (prior to "Independence Day"), to that of Idris Elba's present age/bankability/exposure. Will Smith was a "successful" rapper with huge exposure. He was also the LEAD in a very popular and successful tv series (FOR 6 YEARS!) . Now, the BIGGER kickers: He was 28 years old! He was THE LEAD in a movie (Bad Boys)with a 20 million dollar budget, which made 140 Million, ALL PRIOR TO "Independence Day"!

  • Helluva | October 24, 2012 9:38 PM

    CC, "Independence Day" is what made Will an A-Lister. He was just a likable ex-rapper & sitcom actor prior to that.

  • CareyCarey | October 24, 2012 7:04 PM

    NOPE! Simply not true, Miss Never Assume. First, your analogy is flawed, to say the least. Will Smith was an established A-list actor before appearing "Independence Day". And who - exactly - said Will Smith wasn't suited for his role in that film?! Nevertheless, for argument sake, lets say their were power players who objected to his casting. But being "part" of a cast of actors in a movie that involved fighting aliens, is FAR removed from playing the iconic figure, 007. As Firebrand said, and I agree, America wouldn't accept a black James Bond. To that point, this has nothing to do with "racism", it's simply about everyone's right and desire to see and feel comfortable with a character's image that's etched in their mind. In layman's terms, it does not get any simpler. Just as Super Man is not black, neither is James Bond. So what's the motivation behind flipping the script?

  • Never Assume | October 24, 2012 3:33 PM

    This is the same kind of thinking that almost derailed Will Smith's starring turn in "Independence Day". Thank goodness the line got held there and Will was allowed to star in the one else could have pulled off that role quite as well IMHO. Idris could surprise as well...they'll also get loads of free press from the first black Bond...this country is rapidly changing...we have a black President, which few foresaw happening...I'm sure a black Bond could be successful as well...

  • Margaret Thatcher's purse | October 24, 2012 11:33 AMReply

    "Hilarious! Maybe I'm being too presumptuous, but I would've thought that black British actors would be a close-knit circle - especially the bigger names. Or they'd at least know of one another."

    aka all black people should know each other? Common now, you know better than to be this ignorant. Idris has worked and lived in the US for the past 8 years. Excuse Naomie for not bumping into all black actors in England. Geez!!

  • Nicole | October 24, 2012 8:07 AMReply

    Courtney, I was thinking the same thing(i.e. age). Idris will be around 48 if he gets the chance to play Bond. Not saying that's "old" per se but it may be a little late to start a long career playing Bond. So unless the movie is hugely successful at the box office, Idris' stint as Bond may be a one-shot deal.

    And not to be Debbie Downer, but I see Michael Fassbender getting a shot at playing Bond after Craig before anyone else.

    Time will tell.

  • ALM | October 24, 2012 2:20 PM

    @ Yep, the age issue is a solid issue, which is why if they are going to do this film series they need to begin shooting the series within the next two years. I still vote for making Idris 009 or something......that way he can still be suave and access similar gadgets, etc. without taking on Craig's Bond role.

  • Darnell | October 24, 2012 12:01 AMReply

    Please... no black 007. That's as ridiculous as Vanilla Ice playing Shaft. Come on folks, enough of us trying to "one-up" the white man. Besides, Idris can be the captain of a space vessel on it's way to a galaxy two years away from the moon, in the film Prometheus. And, he can be the doorman in Thor, but white folks will never pay money to see him play their James Bond. Curses... blasphemous... for get about it.

  • Darnell | October 24, 2012 8:28 PM

    Ooooooh Loorrrrd, your name is Poopy Pants and you admit to having a man crush on Idris... I'm not touching that :-(. But dude, I'm not a troll, I am born and raised in this here briar patch. So troll this... you say you're neither liberal nor a hipster, but you are definitely a white guy. So welcome, it's always nice to hear the opinions of those who S&A's readers spend so much time talking about, and worrying about (an inordinate amount of time, in my opinion). Soooooooo... anyway... WRONG!... Idris was NOT the best thing in Thor. Moving on: But I will agree, Prometheus - plain and simple - was a B-flick in a A-flick package. But seriously, what acting did Idris really have to do? Think about that, but look, I'm not crying racism but as captains of space ships go, his power and respect was not what we've seen when white guys are at the helm. Shiiiiiit, along with that emasculating accent, he was given the respect and authority of Stepin Fetchit. Hell, when Morgan Freeman drove Miss Daisy, he got more propps than Idris' Captain Janek. But dude, come to think of it, you're not a liberal, nor a hipster, and you didn't like Obsessed, blaxplotation movies nor Shaft, so why should I believe or listen to anything you have to say about the black cinema and black actors? I mean, damn man, aside from the above, you wanted every black drug dealer killed (without a trail) EXCEPT - Idris... Hmmmm? So, now I'm thinking, Poopy Pants, is on some pure-de-mess.

  • Dr. Poopypants | October 24, 2012 12:56 PM

    GGGEJSJGHKJDFHSDA!!!!!!!!!! This is AWESOME! Darnell, you can be a better troll than that. Idris is the best thing to happen to Thor. His weird accent was not my favorite thing in Prometheus, but the acting was solid again (he did the best he could with a terrible script *shakes fist at Lindelof*). He was the only drug dealer I wanted to live in the Wire. Well, him, Wallace, and eventually D'Angelo (Alas...). The first series of Luther was crazy-amazing. From the Wire, I pretty much decided I was going to watch anything with him in it. Maybe with the exception of that movie he did with Beyonce because that just sucked. I wouldn't watch Vanilla Ice play Shaft because I wouldn't watch Vanilla Ice. Shaft's really not my thing, either. I don't care for most Blacksploitation, though I respect the art-form. Neither do I care much about 007. I loved the cheesy 60's movies as a kid, but the new ones are still cheesy, and they take themselves way too seriously. I gave Daniel Craig a shot since he was pretty awesome in Layer Cake, but then he turned out to be some parkour dingus. Pretty ready for that to be done with. I fully support the change to Idris. His acting style might bring some much needed dimension to the Bond character. BTW, I'm neither liberal or a hipster. Just a dude with good taste. And a man-crush for Idris Elba.

  • Darnell | October 24, 2012 12:50 AM

    Racism?! Let's call it what it is, it's a fact that the overwhelming majority of whites are in no hurry to see black men in lead roles. Of course you might have an argument if you said Denzel and Will Smith's name, but they are an exception, not the rule. But please, as I said, Idris can play the dope man in the black city of Baltimore (and btw, whites did not support that series) and I'm not arguing against his acting talent, but there's not enough liberal good white folks, to support him in the role of James Bond. Hell, he couldn't even carry his own movie. That reminds me, did you and your boys and girls pay to see him in Legacy? Yeah, that's what I thought. Fact is, this ain't racism baby, this is show business. And, white folks have tipped their hold cards. Hell, I'm black and I don't want to see Idris as 007... "Shaken, not stirred". Seriously dude, answer the questions, would you pay to see Brad Pitt play Super Fly or John Shaft or Don King or Muhammad Ali? Yeah yeah yeah, blah blah blah, you're probably trying to think of some liberal white hipster response, but tell the truth, what would your parents say? I'd bet they are not tuning in to Scandal on ABC? No way do they want to see the white president kissing on the dark brown sister. So just imagine the look on their faces when Idris, as James Bond, lays pipe on Pussy Galore and Holly Goodhead?

  • Rachel Pitts | October 24, 2012 12:09 AM

    Seriously, dude? I would totally pay to see Idris Elba play James Bond. Let's leave your racism at the door and talk about what a fantastic actor he is instead!

  • Sarah | October 24, 2012 12:09 AM

    First of all, fuck right off. Idris Elba is a boss and is currently the lead of Luther, a very well-received show.

    Even if he weren't, he played one of the greatest characters on The Wire and plenty of us ignorant ol' white folks love him a lot.

    I'd love to see Idris as Bond not because he's black but because he could do the role fantastically.

  • deecreative | October 23, 2012 11:12 PMReply

    Honestly I don't care if it's Idris/Chiwetel or some other new talent(British of course because it is Bond) but making it happen with quality talent would be amazing!!

  • ALM | October 23, 2012 10:16 PMReply

    Woo wee!!! I have just named Naomie Harris the "bearer of great news". Don't tease me with Idris as Bond news this close to dream time. LOL I like Craig in the role, so I am wondering if Idris should be another 00 character within the Bond universe. Idris can still have his own series of movies, sort of a spin off. @Peace Seeker: I wouldn't be mad if they selected Chiwetel either.

  • Peace seeker | October 23, 2012 9:36 PMReply

    I would much prefer Chiwetel Ejiofor or even Adrian Lester as Bond.
    Both have that good looking/suave/charming and tough kind of vibe without trying to hard.

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