Eddy Gardiner doesn’t want to see a female Bond, but he does want to see a female-led 00 movie…
Nope, I’m not trying to be controversial here. I just want to present an idea that I think could actually work pretty well.
In a recent interview with GQ, the excellent Michael Fassbender ended up discussing his potential casting as James Bond, with Daniel Craig’s future in the role in in a perpetual state of uncertainty (I don’t think anyone really knows what’s going on there anymore). Fassbender makes several interesting points – first of all, assuring us that he’s not interested in playing Bond, and that they should go a completely new direction with it. Like casting a much younger Bond, or an American, or, as we’ve heard doing the rounds, a female.
I’m absolutely all for equality. No question. Anyone who knows me knows that. I think any kind of inequality is despicable and needs to be stamped out – and indeed, I’m all for women getting better roles in Hollywood (a goal I’m specifically targeting in my screenwriting). But I don’t think this is necessarily a question of inequality. I think it’s a question of a knee-jerk, radical change vs a necessary, considered one.
Do we really need to change James Bond’s gender?
I totally get Fassbender’s point about trying something different with Bond – it worked out terrifically when Craig took over from Pierce Brosnan (although anything had to be better than Die Another Day) – and a female Bond would be that something totally new. I’d be lying if I said at least part of me isn’t curious to see it, too. But to literally change James Bond’s gender somehow feels like a step too far. That’s not me being sexist, I just think James Bond is a male character like Lara Croft is a female character – I don’t think we need to drastically alter one of the most iconic film characters of all time to give an actress a great role. Surely there’s another way? Like, I don’t know…
…a female-led 00 movie? THAT would be great. That would be something I could get really excited about. What I’m saying is this: why not make a ‘Bond’ movie that isn’t a Bond movie, but spy movie set in the same universe where we follow another female 00 agent who’s on a mission while Bond is off somewhere else. Maybe they could reference him at some point, or not. The point is they could make a really awesome “Jane Bond” movie without turning Bond, a notorious Lothario, into a female. They could make a spy movie that isn’t tied to the traditional Bond tropes and history – they could have completely free rein to do whatever they want. Personally, I would love to see it.
And don’t get me wrong – if they do cast Bond as a female I’m not going to complain about it. I’ll get behind it and hope for a great movie, I just don’t think they need to do it. I think there are other, more exciting and rewarding options to be explored.
Am I wrong? Let me know in the comments…
Eddy Gardiner – Follow me on Twitter