With the rumour mill suggesting that Daniel Craig will hang up his tux and retire to TV, plus Ladbrokes suspending betting on Tom Hardy as the next 007, we thought it was high time we weighed in with some emergency suggestions for the Broccolis to shake up their thuddingly predictable franchise. Surely the days of the posh white toff are numbered — so how about trying one of these more interesting alternatives?
David Oyelowo — Our top choice and not just because he’s one of the best actors in the country. He’s already played Bond (voicing him for the audiobook of Trigger Mortis), and has also been brilliant as the spy who takes no shit in Spooks. If people can get used to a ball-breaking female M, surely they can get used to a badass black Bond.
Ben Whishaw — As Q, he upstaged Craig in the last two films, so if we were MI6 we would get him out in the field. If we can have a bit of guy-on-guy flirting in Skyfall, why not just cast a straight gay bond?
Kate Winslet — Time for a female Bond-Jane-Bond; and who fits the bill better than KW? After all, an iceberg and a sinking ship couldn’t finish her off. It would also give her a chance to work with ex-hubby Sam Mendes again, which would give the project an extra frisson of jeopardy.
James Corden — He’s got the profile having been a huge hit in the States with his chat show and Tony-winning turn on Broadway. And he’s pulled off convincing action in The Wrong Mans. If we can have a hang-dog, jug-eared Bond like Craig, why can’t we have a slightly chubby one?
Gok Wan — Every casting needs a wild card in the pack. And why not double-o-wan? He’s got plenty of girlfriends and comes armed with his own gadget weapon: the Gok Wan Wok Gun, so he may just confuse the enemy into submission.
Dean Gaffney — Or how about a working class Bond? No-one would suspect the market road sweeper and pesky villains with cats would be quickly neutralised by his dog Wellard.
Okay-okay, so all the ideas above are too politically correct for you? Then let’s go back to the tried-and-tested formula: an Eton-educated bully boy with a line in awful wordplay who likes to antagonise foreigners and get riotously drunk before smashing the place up... So, Boris Johnson then.