The search is on for the next James Bond to follow Daniel Craig, but most of the actors being fancast don’t fit the specified requirements. Daniel Craig’s bleak and gritty James Bond run concluded with 2021’s No Time To Die. Craig first leapt into action as Bond in 2006 with Casino Royale – quite literally so, with the movie’s incredible opening parkour chase – and established his take on 007 as the most rugged and physical one yet.

Over his 15-year stretch as James Bond, Craig returned four times in Quantum of Solace, Skyfall, Spectre, and No Time to Die, with even past James Bond’s like Roger Moore praising Daniel Craig’s performance. With early preparations for a fresh take on 007 with Bond 26 underway, the search for the new Bond will likely take a while, but Bond fans have already offered many suggestions for Craig’s successor. The problem is that the criteria being set for the next James Bond are very specific and take many of the most oft-suggested actors out of contention.


With the added element of No Time to Die having ended with the death of Craig’s Bond, the next 007 is entering the Bond franchise after one of the biggest endings it has ever delivered. Between that and the stipulations in place for the new Bond, the only real course of action is to start anew not unlike how the Daniel Craig James Bond movies began with Casino Royale. Here is what the producers of Bond 26 have in mind for the new James Bond, and why that rules out the majority of 007 fancastings.

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As has been the case for past 007s, the new James Bond will likely be in the role for the long haul. Producer Barbara Broccoli has stated that an incoming James Bond will need to make “a 10-, 12-year commitment”, with Broccoli revealing that this requirement even gave Daniel Craig some hesitation. While Craig and past Bond actors have certainly managed to do other projects in between Bond movies, the role required a sizable portion of their schedules to be devoted to putting their unique stamp on James Bond. With that continuing to be the case for the next James Bond, the other big prerequisite for Craig’s successor also narrows the pool of potential candidates.

For the Bond actor to follow after Daniel Craig, the makers of Bond 26 are reportedly hoping to introduce a younger version of Bond in the film. While a specific age range has not been stated, this probably entails the new Bond being in his late 20s to mid 30s at the oldest. This also helps put the expected longevity of his commitment to the 007 role into context, as the intent seems to be to follow the new Bond as he grows into a more experienced spy in his late 30s and into his 40s.

Most James Bond Fancasts Don’t Work With The 007 Requirements

Big names like Idris Elba, Henry Cavill, and Tom Hardy have been among the most frequent 007 fancasts to follow Daniel Craig after No Time to Die, but all fall outside the age range intended to be the starting point for the new Bond. Elba himself has already publicly declined taking on the Bond role. Meanwhile, with Cavill busy with Netflix’s The Witcher and a potential return as the DCEU’s Superman and Hardy continuing in Sony’s Venom movies, both are tied to other big franchises that make the commitments of a 10-12 year run as James Bond likely unmanageable.

Tom Holland’s name has also been fancast as a younger James Bond, but he too remains busy with Sony’s Uncharted franchise as well as being the MCU’s Spider-Man. Not all Bond fancasts are ruled out though, with the fancast Regé-Jean Page being in the necessary age range for a young Bond and not being tied to a major studio franchise. That said, while Regé-Jean Page could be an ideal Bond, that could change if his upcoming 2023 movie Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves is a big hit, while an extended commitment to Bond would be something Page would need to agree to, as well.

With so many Bond fancasts or other generally strong contenders for the 007 role either being too old to portray a young Bond at the start of his career or having franchise commitments elsewhere, the search for the next Bond will probably be a somewhat extended one. The fancastings put forth for the 007 of Bond 26 comprise many strong leading men who could easily fit the general bill of James Bond. Unfortunately, with Bond 26 seemingly set to take Bond back to his beginnings, most of the fan-suggested names probably won’t be granted James Bond‘s license to kill.

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