Unless you've been living in a cave (or perhaps an underground lair), you'll be well aware that the new James Bond film, No Time To Die, is now showing at Cineworld cinemas across the UK. You also won't need reminding that the 25th movie in the series is the last one to star Daniel Craig. That's a great pity, as the Chester-born star, 53, has done himself – and the franchise – proud, breathing new life into the suave super-spy over five action-packed instalments: Casino Royale, Quantum of Solace, Skyfall, Spectre and now this.
On the plus side, Craig's exit does mean we face the tantalising prospect of seeing a new Bond in the iconic tuxedo. Who will it be? No one knows yet, but there's certainly been plenty of speculation, with everyone from Henry Cavill to Tom Hiddleston being touted as possibilities. Some believe it's time for a black actor to play Ian Fleming's legendary character, while others have said that they'd like to see a woman in the role.
Until that decision has been made by Barbara Broccoli and co, we thought we'd list some of the potential candidates and give our opinion on how likely they are to land the gig. Cue the John Barry music!
1. Idris Elba
The Luther star has been part of the 'next James Bond' discussion for years, but earlier this week he insisted that he won't be replacing Daniel Craig. Appearing on the red carpet at the launch party for this year's London Film Festival at the BFI Southbank on Wednesday, the 49-year-old told ITV London: "No, I'm not going to be James Bond."
If he's being truthful, that's a real shame as Elba certainly has the credentials: tough, suave, looks sharp in a suit. Apart from anything else, many film fans think it's high time that a black actor joined Her Majesty's Secret Service. Even though Elba says it won't be him, he'd love to see it happen one day. "How amazing would it be to have a black James Bond?" he said. "It's a sign of the times when we can stop talking about black, white and colour."
Chance of being Bond: 5 out of 10
2. James Norton
The name's Norton... James Norton. And he seems like a very fitting candidate for the Bond role, boasting an impressive CV that includes some of the most popular TV shows of the past ten years – McMafia, War & Peace, Grantchester, Happy Valley – not to mention the kind of chiselled good looks that one might expect from an international man of mystery.
But for Norton, 36, there's something else that would make him a great choice for the role. "I'm a type one diabetic," he told Metro.co.uk. "How cool would it be to have a diabetic Bond? It would be wonderful for all those diabetic kids out there to think even a type one diabetic could be Bond!"
Chance of being Bond: 8 out of 10
3. Tom Hardy
There are few actors more versatile than Londoner Tom, the former model having played infamous prison inmate Charles Bronson, both Kray twins, Al Capone and Venom, among many other characters. So it's perhaps no surprise that the 44-year-old is one of the bookies' favourites to become the next James Bond. But is he too well-known to play the legendary secret agent?
Naomie Harris, who plays Eve Moneypenny in No Time To Die, seems to think so. Appearing on Lorraine last month, she said of Hardy: "He would make a great Bond, but interestingly they always choose someone who we don't expect and someone who's more up and coming. So, I feel like Tom might be too established. I think like all the names that are being bandied around actually I think it's going to be someone so unexpected and their name isn't even in the mix. But I do think that Tom would be amazing and if I was choosing, I would choose Tom."
Chance of being Bond: 6 out of 10
4. Regé-Jean Page
The Bridgerton hunk, 31, is one of the bookies' favourites to take over from Daniel Craig, and the omens are certainly good. In September, it was announced that the Londoner would play Simon Templar in a new movie reboot of classic 1960s TV series The Saint. And we all know who played that character the first time around... Yep, none other than Bond legend Roger Moore.
Though Page's name has been thrown around more times than Oddjob's hat, the actor has played down the rumours. He told The Hollywood Reporter: "It's got nothing to do with me; nothing to do with anything that has happened in any rooms or any meetings. It's literally just a thing for people to talk about. So it's flattering, but it's just a game."
Chance of being Bond: 7 out of 10
5. Taron Egerton
After he was awarded the Golden Globe for his portrayal of Elton John in Rocketman, Ladbrokes slashed its odds of Egerton, 31, becoming the next James Bond from 50/1 to 25/1. That still makes him a rank outsider, but let's not forget that the Birkenhead-born star has previous when it comes to spy movies, having played the cocky cadet Gary 'Eggsy' Unwin in both of Matthew Vaughn's Kingsman films. And he's also no stranger to death-defying stunts, as anyone who's seen Eddie The Eagle will tell you.
What's more, Egerton himself has previously shown interest in playing the iconic MI6 agent, telling the Daily Mail in 2017 that Bond is "eternally super-cool". So, you never know...
Chance of being Bond: 4 out of 10
6. Lashana Lynch
After Olivia Colman won the Best Actress Oscar in 2019, the bookmaker Betfair claimed that she could one day take the lead role in a Bond film, citing "a growing precedent of women taking over huge roles traditionally reserved for men."
Now that Colman is 47, that's looking increasingly unlikely, but Lashana Lynch could be in with a shout. The 33-year-old Londoner has already taken a massive step in the right direction, landing the role of 007 in No Time To Die (her character Nomi is allocated the number after Bond retires), so who's to say we won't soon see her performing the iconic turn and fire at the start of the next film? She's not sold on the idea, telling The Guardian: "Nooo! You don't want me! I'd just be like: 'Erm, right, so where do you start again?'" But, if her all-action performance in this instalment is anything to go by, we reckon she'd hit the ground running.
Chance of being Bond: 3 out of 10
7. Daniel Radcliffe
Think we're being daft? We're not the only ones to have had the idea. Appearing on The Graham Norton Show in 2019 to promote his role as Rex Dasher in Playmobil: The Movie, the 32-year-old revealed: "When people meet me in America and hear my English accent, they say: 'You should play James Bond.'"
If the idea of Harry Potter exchanging his wand for a gun and being amorous in the shower sounds like anathema to you, you needn't worry. Radcliffe assured viewers: "I know, and everyone here knows, I will never be James Bond. Playing a Bond-like Playmobil character felt much more likely!"
Having the young actor take over from Daniel Craig would at least have one advantage: they wouldn't have to change the name on the dressing room door.
Chance of being Bond: 1 out of 10