Eighteen months later than expected and the end of the Daniel Craig era is finally upon us, with the actor’s final outing as James Bond in No Time to Die now playing internationally ahead of a domestic release next Friday. It’s been a long time coming, and the good news for fans is that the reviews have declared it a fitting swansong.
He may be bowing out of the iconic role, but nobody ever escapes the shadow of Bond. Sean Connery, George Lazenby, Roger Moore, Timothy Dalton and Pierce Brosnan all resigned themselves to the fact that 007 would follow them wherever they went for the rest of their lives and careers, something Craig will have to get used to.
In a new interview with The New York Times where he reflected on his legacy as cinema’s most famous secret agent, the 53 year-old self-deprecatingly quipped that he might end up going down as the most curmudgeonly live-action interpretation of Ian Fleming’s literary creation.
“There’s a consistency which I wanted to put into it. Maybe I’ll be remembered as the grumpy Bond. I don’t know. That’s just my Bond and I have to face up to it, that has been my Bond. But I’m quite satisfied with that.”
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Craig brought James Bond into the modern era by reinventing the suave, debonair and promiscuous hybrid of playboy and super spy as a hard-edged, grounded and more intense action hero that’s been dogged by heartbreak ever since Casino Royale. Grumpy might not be the word, even if he was hardly flying around in a jet pack and dropping eye-rolling one liners with reckless abandon.