Female James Bond idea was discussed before ‘Dr No’ was made

Female James Bond idea was discussed before ‘Dr No’ was made

The idea of casting a woman as James Bond was pitched before 1962’s Dr. No was made, according to a new book.

READ MORE: ‘No Time To Die’ review: Daniel Craig’s surprisingly emotional final fling

Lashana Lynch became the first woman in the long-running franchise to be given a 007 title in the last Bond outing, No Time To Die, but a woman hasn’t yet taken the titular lead singularly in the series.

Now, in Nicholas Shakespeare’s upcoming biography of Bond author Ian Fleming, Ian Fleming: The Complete Man, it’s revealed that the idea of having a female Bond was first pitched over 60 years ago (via Variety).

The book claims that producer Gregory Ratoff suggested the idea of casting five-time Oscar nominee Susan Hayward in a film adaptation of Fleming’s first Bond novel Casino Royale.
In the book, Hayward writes (via IndieWire): “Since the mid-1950s, many well-known actors had been approached [to play Bond].

“Gregory Ratoff had the arresting idea of having Bond played by a woman, Susan Hayward. Ian had entertained several possibilities, from Richard Burton (‘I think that Richard Burton would be by far the best James Bond’), to James Stewart (‘I wouldn’t at all mind him as Bond if he can slightly anglicise his accent’), to James Mason (‘We might have to settle for him’).”

Screenwriter Lorenzo Semple Jr. also noted this to Variety back in 2012 and claimed that Ratoff was interested in Hayward because “frankly, we thought [Bond] was kind of unbelievable and as I recall, even kind of stupid. So Gregory thought the solution was to make Bond a woman, ‘Jane Bond’ if you will.”

Author Flemming didn’t entertain the idea, according to the book. Longtime Bond producer Michael G. Wilson said: “Sean Connery was the right guy in the movie for the right time…If it hadn’t been Sean, who knows? Would it have captured the attention of the whole world?”
“It was the sheer self-confidence he exuded,” added producer Barbara Broccoli about Connery. “He walked like the most arrogant son-of-a-gun, you’ve ever seen – as if he owned every bit of Jermyn Street from Regent Street to St James. ‘That’s our Bond.’”

Recently, rumours have been rife about the next Bond to follow in Daniel Craig’s footsteps with recent reports suggesting that Tenet star Aaron Taylor-Johnson would be taking on the iconic role, two years after Craig stepped down from the franchise.

According to The Sun, a source shared that EON Productions had offered the role to the 33-year-old: “Bond is Aaron’s job, should he wish to accept it. The formal offer is on the table and they are waiting to hear back. As far as EON is concerned, Aaron is going to sign his contract in the coming days and they can start preparing for the big announcement.”

Taylor-Johnson was just one of the actors being rumoured for the role of the British secret agent, with Idris Elba, Henry Cavill and Regé-Jean Page also being favoured.

Recently, Pierce Brosnan gave Taylor-Johnson his blessing, as did another 007 icon, with On Her Majesty’s Secret Service star George Lazenby weighing in on the news.

The post Female James Bond idea was discussed before ‘Dr No’ was made appeared first on NME.

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