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Is Tom Hardy the new James Bond?

Hardy. Tom Hardy.

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Even before Daniel Craig concluded his time as James Bond, fans were already talking about who could replace him. Craig breathed new life into the franchise with his inaugural movie as the MI6 agent, 2006’s Casino Royale. However, just 12 years later he was itching to be done with it all, famously saying “I don’t want to do any more.” Two years before No Time To Die premiered in 2021, Craig confirmed he was done with 007. Now, the burning question remains who will be his successor? Enter: Tom Hardy.

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Whenever we talk about who should play the next Bond there are countless names thrown around, with Idris Elba famously leading the pack. (Elba confirmed on an episode of HBO’s The Shop in Sept. 2022 that he’s definitely not playing the part). Henry Cavill, Regé-Jean Page, and Aaron Taylor-Johnson have also been prominent contenders, but of them all, Tom Hardy continues to lead the conversation, especially since he quite arguably received the biggest seal of approval ever in the form of Pierce Brosnan’s personal vote.

The Venom, Inception, Dark Knight Rises, and Mad Max actor has even commented on the role a while back, so let’s take a look at what he said and what it means for James Bond.

What has Tom Hardy said about being cast as James Bond?

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Tom Hardy was asked about James Bond a few years ago while promoting his FX show Taboo. The actor had recently starred in Mad Max: Fury Road and as you can see, Craig’s departure from the role has been telegraphed for years. Hardy spoke to The Daily Beast back in 2017 when he said, “You know, there’s a saying amongst us in the fraternity of acting, and in the fellowship of my peer group, that if you talk about it you’re automatically out of the race. So I can’t possibly comment on that one! If I mention it, it’s gone.” 

It is not entirely out of character to be somewhat mysterious about Bond, but it also was not as if he was suddenly about to admit that he had been cast as the character. This might explain why there aren’t many actors talking about playing the secret agent, as they do not want to jinx their chances.

So, is he or isn’t he playing James Bond?

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The truth of the matter is we still don’t know who is playing James Bond yet, but it’s unlikely to be Hardy. Not because Hardy wouldn’t be perfect for the part, but because he’s too old to see the character through what would be the next decade of films.

Ever since long-time James Bond casting director Debbie McWilliams told RadioTimes that young actors who auditioned for the part “didn’t have the gravitas” and then Eon Productions followed that up with an alleged report that it is looking for an actor in his 30s, Hardy, who is 45 years old as of this writing, was unceremoniously exited from the conversation.

We won’t know who our next James Bond will be for a while longer, but you can rest assured (or at least 90% assured) that it’s not Hardy, as sad as that is to hear. If Hardy was your top contendor, we’ll let you stew in your dissapoint for a while, but hopefully you can find solace in knowing Hardy still very much attached to Venom 3 and Mad Max: The Wasteland.