Some shifting odds seem to be suggesting there could be a dramatic casting change for a future James Bond film. On Tuesday, top betting sites slashed odds of a female lead in the next 007 film after a surge of bets were placed. This suggests some bettors are convinced the next Bond will feature not only a new face but a new gender as well.
Leading actresses in Hollywood often seen as potential Bonds if the shift to a female lead ever actually happened have certainly seen their odds drop. Emily Blunt, current star of the horror film Silence, had her odds plummet from 250/1 to 50/1. Fellow British actress Gillian Anderson is also a top contender, according to bookies.
Paddy Power lists Tom Hardy as the favorite at 9/4 odds. British television and movie actor James Norton is second at 11/4, followed by American Hustle actor Jack Huston at 7/1. Idris Elba has the fourth-best odds, according to the Irish bookmaker. He would be the first person of color to star as 007.
Hardy, set to play the lead in the upcoming film Venom, is the favorite at Betway Sports with 9/4 odds. Norton is second at 5/2 and Elba as well as Marvel franchise actor Tom Hiddleston are tied for third with 6/1 odds. Unibet gives better odds to Norton to play the hero’s role at 5/2. Hardy follows at 11/2 with Huston third at 4/1.
James Bond movie producer, Barbara Broccoli added credence to the female casting rumors during an interview with the Daily Mail last December. She said a female and/or a person of color could take over as the iconic British spy after current lead Daniel Craig gives up the role, all this after praising Craig as the best Bond ever:
"These films tend to reflect the times so we always try to push the envelope a little bit,' she replied. 'Anything is possible. Right now it's Daniel Craig, and I'm very happy with Daniel Craig, but who knows what the future will bring?"
Craig took over as 007 more than 10 years ago. His appearance in Casino Royale helped make it one of the most iconic movies in the long-running franchise and one of the best gambling movies of all time. After taking over for Pierce Brosnan, the UK native also starred in Quantum of Solace, Skyfall and SPECTRE.
In recent years, the actor has indicated he has grown disinterested in the role that made him a global star. Still, he is set to return for the currently untitled 25th film in the series, scheduled for a November 2019 release date.
Specials betting, or wagers on entertainment, political figures and almost anything else, has become increasingly popular, and speculation around the world’s most popular movie spy franchise is no exception. Along with movies, bets on reality shows like X-Factor and Big Brother remain trendy.
In addition to bets on entertainment, gamblers can get odds on major political and global developments. Some top bookmakers are taking odds on changes between the UK and EU regarding Brexit. Gamblers can also place wagers on North Korea and its relationship with the United States.
Current offerings also cover odds on the likelihood U.S. President Donald Trump finishes his first term but these more serious specials markets aren't always as popular as some of the more obscure entertainment markets. A wealth of top bookmakers almost always find themselves offering odds on at least one James Bond wager.