Director Danny Boyle offers suggestions for who could play the next James Bond

The 'Trainspotting' filmmaker was pegged to direct the 25th Bond film before pulling out due to creative differences with franchise producers

Danny Boyle said 'The Batman' actor Robert Pattinson would be perfect as the next James Bond. Photo: AFP
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Just as Robert Pattinson has found form and praise in the rugged latex of The Batman, the English actor has been cited as a strong contender to take on the role of another enduring crime fighter.

Trainspotting filmmaker Danny Boyle, who was initially pegged to direct No Time To Die, told Esquire UK in a new interview that he wasn’t eager to take on another James Bond film, but that he could see either Pattinson or I May Destroy You actor Paapa Essiedu stepping into the role vacated by Daniel Craig, who bid farewell to the character last year after playing 007 for 15 years.

Boyle said he could also see 'I May Destroy You' actor Paapa Essiedu take on the 007 mantle.  Photo: EPA

Boyle was initially set to direct and develop the script for the 25th Bond film with screenwriter John Hodge. However, the two pulled out of the project after citing creative differences with producers. The director instead went on to release his 2019 romantic comedy, Yesterday.

“I remember thinking: ‘Should I really get involved in franchises?’ Because they don’t really want something different,” Boyle told Esquire UK.

The director, who is behind critically acclaimed films such as Slumdog Millionaire and The Beach, said he felt creatively stifled during production.

“They want you to freshen it up a bit, but not really challenge it, and we wanted to do something different with it. Weirdly — it would have been very topical now — it was all set in Russia, which is of course where Bond came from, out of the Cold War. It was set in present-day Russia and went back to his origins, and they just lost, what’s the word… they just lost confidence in it. It was a shame really.”

When asked if he would ever return to give the franchise another go, Boyle said it was unlikely. “I don’t think so,” was his response.

At this point, it’s unclear who will be the next James Bond. The 26th film in the franchise is reported to already be in early development. On the casting side of things, however, producers have yet to start auditioning new actors, so we could still be a long way from meeting the new Bond.

Updated: May 15, 2022, 11:10 AM