AceShowbiz - Damian Lewis is being groomed to be the next James Bond, it has been reported. The "Homeland" star is touted to be the successor of Daniel Craig whose contract to reprise his role as 007 agent expires after the upcoming "Spectre".
Lewis had been given an "unofficial nod" that he was top of the list to replace Craig, Sunday Mirror said in its report. "If Daniel Craig leaves, it's Damian Lewis who will be crowned the new Bond," a source told the U.K. paper. "He is seen as an all-round international star who is perfect for the role. As he ages, he looks increasingly suave and sophisticated."
Craig previously hinted that he would step down from the famous role when "Spectre" comes along in November. "But at the moment all focus is on the release of 'Spectre' in November. Producers are convinced it's a particularly strong 007 movie," the source continued. "Daniel excels in the role and there is no pressure on him to step down. But if he does, people close to Damian have had an unofficial nod he is the number one choice."
A number of actors including Idris Elba and David Beckham have been mentioned as the next candidates but none of the reports appeared to be true. Elba, who would have been the first black Bond, said it was a rumor started by Craig. Meanwhile, Beckham laughed off the rumor triggered by fans' petition to have him take the role.
This was certainly not the first time Lewis' name came up. In July this year, Britain's biggest bookmaker William Hill spokesman Rupert Adams said, "This is an unprecedented gamble, as for no apparent reason we have seen bets of up to 200 pounds ($312) on Damian Lewis being named as the next Bond. This could well be significant and might herald the end of Daniel Craig as the world's most famous spy." Craig went on committing to "Spectre" and Lewis was shelved.