British actor Jamie Bell is a surprise contender to replace Daniel Craig as James Bond.
Jamie, 30, is set to star in new movie Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool, which is being produced by Barbara Broccoli, 55, the boss of EON productions, the studio behind the 007 films.
According to Britain’s The Sun newspaper, the movie mogul is such a fan of the Billy Elliot star she is considering him as a shock choice to play the suave secret agent after Daniel, 48, steps down.
“Barbara has been a fan of Jamie for a long time and has even thought about him playing another role in the franchise before,” a source tells The Sun. “Everyone remembers Jamie as the little boy in Billy Elliott, but he’s now bulked up and got some serious roles under his belt.”
The insider adds, “Tom Hiddleston and Aidan Turner are still in the frame, but Jamie has really shown that he is definitely up there competing with them.”
Despite the success of the previous Bond film Spectre upon its release last year, Daniel is reported to be considering quitting the iconic role.
A recent report in Britain’s Daily Mail newspaper stated he was “done” with playing the British superspy and had allegedly turned down a mammoth $100 million deal to star in another Bond film.
If chosen to replace Daniel, Jamie would be a left field choice for the part, given the major British stars who have dominated casting discussions.
As well as Aidan, 32, and Tom, 35, the latter of which has been installed as British bookmakers’ favourite to take on the role after allegedly being spotted meeting Spectre director Sam Mendes, Idris Elba, 43, has been heavily touted to become the first black actor to take on the iconic part.
Jamie would not be the first shock choice to play Bond however, as the announcement of Daniel’s casting in 2005 sparked an angry reaction from fans.
However, he won over his critics with his debut as 007 in Casino Royale, which was critically acclaimed and made just under $600 million in cinemas around the world after its 2006 release