This evening the 46-year-old star returns for series 5 of the BBC’s Luther. And with Elba back in the spotlight, it’s not surprising that support for him to be the next James Bond is once again rampant. Just yesterday his odds of being the actor to replace Daniel Craig were slashed from 4-1 to 3-1 with Coral. And now following a further flurry of bets, Elba is 5-2 to be the next Bond. A spokesman for the bookmakers said: “If this gamble is correct, we could be set for our first ever black actor playing James Bond as we are being knocked over with interest in Idris Elba becoming the next 007.”
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Meanwhile, James Norton is still ahead at 9-4 and Tom Hiddleston remains the favourite at 6-4.
There’s certainly a trend of male leads in BBC dramas being tipped to be the next Bond.
Interest in Norton spiked a year ago today when he starred in McMafia’s first episode wearing a tuxedo in a casino.
Similarly a couple of years ago, Hiddleston starred as a spy in The Night Manager.
And just a few months ago Richard Madden was the favourite while starring in MI5 drama Bodyguard.
He’s now down to 8-1, so perhaps Elba’s spike in support will only last as long as Luther.
After all, Craig only starts shooting his fifth and final Bond movie this March for a February 2020 release.
With that in mind, Bond producers won’t be auditioning a new 007 until at least 2022.