Idris Elba As James Bond Would Be Amazing

Above: Idris Elba suits up for the red carpet.
Above: Idris Elba suits up for the red carpet.

Question. Has Anthony Horowitz seen Idris Elba in anything other than The Wire? That’s my question on the heals of Horowitz, who is now penning the James Bond book series, saying that the recently turned 43-year-old British actor is “too street” to play the famous secret agent.

Yes, Elba broke through in the gritty drugs-and-gangs HBO drama set in Baltimore, but even Stringer Bell was more about being in the boardroom than being on the block. He was the second-in-command to Avon Barksdale and while his friend wanted to keep things hood, String was trying to establish the crew as legitimate businessmen, taking college classes, setting up shell corporations, making decidedly un-street movements.

He’s made comic book fans forget their outrage over his casting as Heimdall in the Thor movies. His work as DCI John Luther exhibits a lot of the scarred and damaged undertones that I think a good Bond should exude since under the tuxedo and beneath the perfectly groomed exterior there has to be a man wrestling with the fact that almost everyone he loves tends to wind up dead and he’s dropped a lot of bodies over the years.

There aren’t enough gin martinis to make you forget about those things.

What struck me most about Horowitz’ comment was not that the guy who was just tapped to become the latest in a long line of writers to pen a Bond novel had his own thoughts on who should play the popular 007 in the future – it’s just his opinion and he’s certainly entitled to it – but that everyone seems to forget that people went bonkers when Daniel Craig inherited the role from Pierce Brosnan.

When it was announced in 2005 that Craig, best known at the time for his excellent work as the lead in Layer Cake, was going to start playing the part of the British special agent, people lost their shit. They questioned whether the producers had just submarined the whole franchise.

He was too blond and too short and there was no way he could…

Casino Royale was awesome and Craig immediately became a far better Bond than anyone expected.

Quantum of Solace I can do without, but that doesn’t necessarily fall on Craig so much as it does the people that penned the adventure. Opinions are split on Skyfall, but I thought it was entertaining and am eagerly anticipating the arrival of Spectre in early November.

There is no official word on Spectre being Craig’s last turn as 007, so some of this Elba talk is premature. That being said, there is nothing wrong with spit-balling ideas for future projects and personally, I think he’d be an outstanding choice to take over the role from Craig if he does step aside.

If you’re not sold, check out this brief sample intro from The Verge with Elba as Bond and try to tell me you’re not interested.

E. Spencer Kyte

E. Spencer Kyte is a freelance journalist based in Abbotsford, British Columbia, where he lives with his wife and dog. In addition to his work here, he writes about sports for Complex Canada and covers the UFC for various outlets. His mom also still tells him what to do on a regular basis, even though he’s nearly 40. He tweets from @spencerkyte.

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