Taron Egerton to succeed Daniel Craig in James Bond franchise reboot

Looks like playing one spy is not enough for Taron Egerton. The 26-year-old Brit, coming off of breakout success of KINGSMAN: THE SECRET SERVICE and EDDIE THE EAGLE, has landed one of the most coveted roles in movie history: James Bond. The Hollywood Reporter has learned that Egerton will succeed Daniel Craig in the next 007 film which is tentatively slated for release in 2018. Rumors have been swirling since the release of SPECTRE as to whether Craig would return for another round as the legendary secret agent but many assumed that was fatigue from the grueling and fast-paced shoot. The Sam Mendes directed film has grossed over $800 million worldwide but did not reach the critical success of SKYFALL.

Egerton is set to film KINGSMAN: THE GOLDEN CIRCLE and play the title role in ROBIN HOOD: ORIGINS this year. Both movies are set for release in 2017 which would mean the young star would either have to drop one of those massive projects or delve right into the next Bond film as soon as they wrap production. I would imagine that the opportunity to take on such a massive franchise would take precedence over either other project. There is no word on the impacts to either of those productions or what this could mean for the future of Matthew Vaughn's Bond-inspired spy series, but I would expect to hear more from 20th Century Fox and Lionsgate in the immediate future.

Bond franchise producer Barbara Broccoli was quoted regarding the new take on the long running film series.

It has been an honor to carry my father's [Albert Broccoli] legacy with the 007 film series through the Pierce Brosnan and Daniel Craig eras. While Daniel's performance has been a brilliant achievement, it felt like the right time to take our story back to the beginning and deliver a story that audiences have never seen. We will return to the Ian Fleming stories and novels to develop an original and exhilirating first chapter in the tale of James Bond.

Interestingly, the news from Sony/MGM explicitly refers to this new Bond film as "the first film in a new franchise" and states that it is currently being developed under the working title of BOND 1. This seems to indicate that unlike the Daniel Craig films which partially rebooted the long-running series, this film will take everything back to the beginning and follow Bond in his younger days. It is very early in the process, so no plot or directors have been revealed as of yet but with the massive fan-base surrounding the James Bond films, I doubt we will have to wait long for more information.

It comes without question that audiences are going to take this news with mixed reaction. Origin stories and reboots have not always had a great track record and Daniel Craig's casting was met with disdain when it was announced. I think Egerton brings an energy and vitality that will change the dynamic of James Bond and could lead to great things. As always, we should keep ourselves from going nuts until we actually see footage from the film. Until then, stay tuned for more details as they develop.

BOND 1 will hit theaters sometime in 2018.



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