Daniel Craig has only starred in two James Bond movies so far. That’s one more than walking-Trivial-Pursuit-factoid George Lazenby ever managed, and the equal of proto-Craig Timothy Dalton. The currently-filming Skyfall will put Craig in striking distance of Pierce Brosnan, whose four films ran the gamut from good (Goldeneye) to funny-bad (Tomorrow Never Dies) to horrible (The World is Not Enough) to batcrap-crazy (Die Another Day.) Sean Connery made six “official” Bond movies, but if you throw in his off-brand Thunderball remake Never Say Never Again, then he’s tied with Roger Moore at seven 007 movies.
That seven-film record always seemed essentially unbreakable. In the half-century since Dr. No, action films have become expensive, time-consuming spectacles. (Connery starred in five Bond films in six years, which is roughly how long it takes to make one Mission: Impossible movie.) And it never even seemed like Craig would even try to aim for that record. Craig’s role in Casino Royale as a grittier, more amoral 007 opened doors for him in Hollywood that would have never opened for his predecessors. (Pierce Brosnan had to settle for Bond-ian roles in The Thomas Crown Affair and The Tailor of Panama; imagine Brosnan being offered The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo.) Add in the long delay caused by MGM’s money woes, and it began to seem like Craig’s run as the superspy would be relatively brief.
However, at least one man wants Craig to stick around for awhile. Producer Michael G. Wilson – who steers the Bond franchise alongside his stepsister Barbara Broccoli – reportedly told a British newspaper reporter, “I’d love Daniel to surpass Roger’s record and do eight pictures.” Now, this might just be an errant bit of overexuberance. (Representatives for Craig did not respond to EW’s request for comment.)
Still, it’s interesting to consider the possibility that Craig might stick with the franchise for that long. Roger Moore and Pierce Brosnan never seemed to mind being defined by the Bond character, but Craig – whose pre-Bond career included highly-praised turns in indie movies and showy supporting role in Steven Spielberg’s Munich – has always seemed to have loftier goals in sight. And assuming the franchise maintained a biannual schedule, Craig’s eighth Bond film would be released in 2022, when he would turn 54.
PopWatchers, would you want to see Craig in eight Bond movies? Is 54 too old for an action hero of this Bond’s mold, or has Harrison Ford’s Indiana Jones paved the way for such aging icons?
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