James Bond cast: Is Regé-Jean Page the new Bond?

Bridgerton: Regé-Jean Page discusses 'heads-up' he gave family

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James Bond fans have been speculating about who could take over from Daniel Craig for a long while now. Daniel suggested he would step back from the role before No Time to Die’s original release date, and now the film’s delay may also have delayed the vital news. One name has been coming up a great deal of late: Regé-Jean Page.

Is Regé-Jean Page the new Bond?

At the moment, Regé-Jean Page has been mooted as the favourite to follow in Daniel Craig’s footsteps, but no such confirmation has been given.

Previously, names like Tom Hardy and Sam Heughan have been odds-on for the role, but some recent news has given fans a new favourite.

Bridgerton fans were utterly aghast when Lady Whistledown wrote a note to tell them of the departure of the Duke of Hastings, Regé-Jean’s character in the Netflix show.

The announcement via the Bridgerton Twitter page read: “Dearest readers, while all eyes turn to Lord Anthony Bridgerton’s quest to find a Viscountess, we bid adieu to Regé-Jean Page, who so triumphantly played the Duke of Hastings.

“We’ll miss Simon’s presence onscreen, but he will always be a part of the Bridgerton family.

“Daphne will remain a devoted wife and sister, helping her brother navigate the upcoming social season and what it has to offer – more intrigue and romance than my readers may be able to bear. Yours truly, Lady Whistledown.”

Coral, the bookmakers, has placed Regé-Jean as the favourite to take over from Daniel as Bond, with odds of 5/2 compared to Tom Hardy and James Norton, who are joint second-favourites at 3/1.

Harry Aitkenhead of Coral said: “The news that Rege-Jean Page will not be returning for the second series of Bridgerton has prompted plenty of bets from punters who believe he’ll make the perfect James Bond.

“We now make him favourite, ahead of Tom Hardy, for who succeeds Daniel Craig as 007.”

While these odds may be appealing, and the news of Regé-Jean’s departure from Bridgerton had got tongues wagging, there are those who believe he is merely a flavour of the month.

Dr Ian Kinane, a senior lecturer at the University of Roehampton and editor of the International Journal of James Bond Studies, gave his expert view on whether it could be Regé-Jean to take on the role before news of the actor’s departure from Bridgerton.

He said: “As a young, British actor who has suddenly risen to prominence in a suddenly popular Netflix show, people are paying attention.

“I think the reaction might be somewhat knee-jerk, a premature shout…

“I think part of the premature reaction is about the physical desirousness of Regé-Jean Page as a leading man.

“Of course, it would be preferable if the future James Bond could act and not simply be a coat-hanger for fine tuxedos.

“My point is, much of the current hype is around Page’s status as heart-throb du jour.”

One thing Dr Kinane made clear is there is certainly precedent for actors who have appeared in period drama to make their move onto the action circuit through Bond.

He said: “It isn’t unheard of that a future James Bond is known to have donned period costume at some point in his pre-Bond career.

“Daniel Craig, for instance, appeared in Elizabeth (1998); and Timothy Dalton virtually made his name in costume dramas and other period pieces.”

It may be Bridgerton has provided Regé-Jean with the perfect training ground for Bond, but at the moment, the producers at Eon and Regé-Jean himself have remained tight-lipped around who is taking over from Daniel.

Speaking to The Mirror recently, Regé-Jean said of the renewed interest in the rumours: “Ah, the ‘B’ word. I think that if you are British, and you do anything of note that other people take notice of, then people will start talking about that.

“I think that’s fairly normal, and I’m flattered to be in the category of Brits that people have noticed. Nothing more—or less—than that.”

Until the release of No Time to Die, it is unlikely the producers at Eon will make any announcements about Daniel’s replacement, so fans will have a little while longer to wait.

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