Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson, Eon Productions heads and the longtime stewards of the James Bond franchise, have been open and honest in their affirmations that the title role in the long-running espionage series will never be played by a woman.
While the pair are open to pronouns other than he/him, they explained that they’d much rather see strong female characters stand on their own two feet inside 007’s universe, rather than gender-swapping the iconic secret agent and invite all the inevitable backlash that would come with it.
However, when speaking to Deadline, the producers said they’d love to have a female director step behind the camera to call the shots on a Bond blockbuster, even though they wouldn’t be drawn into the discussion any further than that.
“I’d love to have a female [director]. We’d love to do that. I’d love to have a female director. We’ll have to see what happens, we’ll start the process sometime this year I guess, and we’ll see where it takes us.”
This year isn’t just the 60th anniversary of Dr. No, or the first year of Amazon’s ownership of MGM, but a bold new era for MI6’s finest in every respect. A new actor is needed to throw on the tux, a director is required, and they’ve got a clean slate to work with after Daniel Craig went out in a literal blaze of glory at the end of No Time to Die.
Whether it ends up being a woman or not, the next 007 director has the blankest canvas the series has seen since Martin Campbell returned to the fold to helm Casino Royale over fifteen years ago, which makes it a highly coveted position.