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UPDATED: 007 author doesn’t think Idris Elba is suave enough to play James Bond

The Wire

Warning: this article spoils the ending of Skyfall.

Anthony Horowitz, an English novelist whose James Bond novel Trigger Mortis releases on September 8, doesn’t like the rumor that Idris Elba will portray James Bond after Daniel Craig finishes his five-film stint. In an interview with The Daily Mail, Horowitz assured readers that his objection isn’t “a color issue,” before using the dubious description of Elba being “too street” for the role. He said, “I can think of other black actors who would do it better,” singling out Adrian Lester, star of Hustle. He added, “Is it a question of being suave? Yeah.” This is a strange observation, as most people consider Elba more than capable of hitting the suave notes. He even convinced Charlize Theron to have sex with him in Prometheus by suggesting that only a robot would be immune to his charms. And, unlike other scenes in Prometheus, audiences went along with it.


Horowitz continued displaying questionable taste by calling Skyfall “the one Bond film I never liked.” He explained, “Bond is weak in it. He has doubts. That’s not Bond. … Secondly, the villain wins. The villain sets out to kill M—the film finishes with the villain killing M. So why have I watched it?” Besides the fact that the complaints about Skyfall’s ending aren’t accurate—a shot from one of the villain’s henchmen ultimately does M in, and the villain himself is denied the pleasure of killing her by Bond—it’s also unclear why Horowitz opposes Bond having doubts or being weakened in Skyfall but is okay with those traits showing up in Casino Royale or On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.

Irregularities aside, it sounds as if Horowitz prefers that James Bond stories stick close to the paradigm they followed religiously for nearly 50 years. So, it’s probably a pretty safe bet that Bond gets his man at the end of Trigger Mortis, a pun that’s not as suave as it should be.

UPDATE: After the online uproar one might expect from such a blatant display of anti-charisma bias, the Associated Press reports that Horowitz has apologized for his remarks. “In the article I expressed the opinion that to my mind Adrian Lester would be a better choice but I’m a writer not a casting director so what do I know?,” he said on Twitter, adding that he didn’t mean to offend and was basing his opinion on Elba’s title role on Luther.

[h/t The Hollywood Reporter]


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