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Idris Elba says he isn’t “going to be” new James Bond

Idris Elba is so used to interviewers bringing up James Bond that he now preempts it and shuts it down, and has definitively said "I'm not going to be that guy"

Who will be the next James Bond: Idris Elba in Luther

Idris Elba’s rise to fame, thanks to his iconic role as Stringer Bell in The Wire, almost exactly coincided with the start of Daniel Craig’s tenure as James Bond. And for some reason, throughout Craig’s 15 year reign as the super spy, people have been obsessed with Elba being the next Bond. Bond casting speculation has gone into overdrive since Craig bowed out of the role in 2021, and despite Elba now being 50-years-old, he is still asked about it all the time.

Elba has been trying to forge his own path in the industry with TV and movie acting roles, writing and directing movies and TV, as well as his DJ career.

In the last five years, his movie roles have been as diverse as to include two westerns, two superhero movies (for both MCU and DCU), playing a genie in a bottle for George Miller, punching a lion in action movie Beast, playing Knuckles in Sonic 2, doing a Fast and Furious movie, and lest we forget – playing Macavity in Cats.

His most recent project is Luther: The Fallen Sun – a long-planned Netflix movie version of the renowned TV detective character he’s been playing since 2010. Speaking at the World Government Summit in Dubai (as one does), Elba said; “It’s very dark. We’ve been working on the television show for about 10 years and so the natural ambition is to take it to the big screen, and so we’re here with the first movie.”

He added; “You know, a lot of people talk about another character that begins with ‘J’ and ends with ‘B,’ but I’m not going to be that guy. I’m going to be John Luther. That’s who I am.” Elba clearly wants people to give up fan-casting him, and stop bringing it up in every interview.

The Luther movie will get a small theatrical release in the US from February 24, then will be available on Netflix from March 10. While you wait, check out our guide to the best detective movies.