James Bond ‘Tom Hardy secretly cast to replace Daniel Craig as 007: Bookies slash odds

Many thought we woud have had a new Bond star by now. When Craig publicly announced after the release of SPECTRE in 2015 that he would rather “slit my wrists” than make another film in the franchise, the race began. Huge early favourites included Tom Hiddleston, Idris Elba and Tom Hardy. All three have remained in contention, despite the arrival of newcomers like Richard Madden, Sam Heughan and James Norton. But a new Hollywood leak just claimed Hardy had already been cast backover the summer and the producers are just waiting to announce the news.

Respected site The Vulcan Reporter posted at the weekend they had heard back in June that Hardy had been confirmed after a successful audition.

According to the site, the 43-year-old Brit’s casting was going to formally announced as the new Bond this November, during the major promotional push for Craig’s final outing in No Time To Die.

But, with cinema release dates in chaos due to the on-going coronavirus pandemic, this now seems less likely. The Vulcan Reporter was confident that that an announcement will come before the end of 2020.

UK bookies dramatically slashed odds or even suspended all bets in repsonse.

Ladbrokes now have Tom Hardy priced at 4-5 to play 007 next.

The actor, whose latest big screen outing is as notorious gangster Al Capone in Capone, hadbeen languishing behind the favourites at 8-1 last week.

At the wekend, UK bookies Coral and BoyleSports immediately suspended all bets on who will be the next James Bond.

A spokesman for Coral told Express Online: “The betting on who will play James Bond is always popular with our punters, with James Norton and Sam Heughan the two most recent favourites, but Tom Hardy has always been close to the head of the betting.

“Hardy was as short as 6-4 favourite last year, so if he has indeed landed the coveted role, the bookies will have been left shaken if not stirred.”

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Boylesports said: “The overnight gamble on Tom Hardy was easily the biggest market move we’ve seen over the past year and it bears all the hallmarks of a done deal.

“The avalanche of support he received saw him crash into 1-5 from 5-1 before we had no choice but to pull the market on Saturday morning.”

As for Hardy, himself, the typically quiet star has resoluetly maintained he “can’t comment” on all the speculation.

JAMES BOND: NO TIME TO DIE IS SET FOR RELEASE ON NOVEMBER 12

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