Bond Franchise Needs To Evolve To Stay Relevant

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The 25th installment of the Bond franchise is reportedly set to cast Lashana Lynch, a black woman, to play the iconic 007 role, which the writer deems as an appropriate change that will keep the franchise relevant in today’s generation.

Bond has been a long-standing iconic espionage franchise that has remained a fan favorite throughout the decade. However, it is also known to be a dominant male franchise with different white male personalities taking on the lead of James Bond such as Sean Connery, Pierce Brosnan, and the most recent Daniel Craig.

Also, the Bond role has always been known to be a player in the lives of women, usually referred to as “Bond girls,” that he usually gets to be in tandem in the movies. More often than not, Bond girls are traditionally objects of pleasure rather than playing significant characters in the overall storyline.

In Craig’s own words, the Bond character has always been “a very lonely, sexist misogynist.” In the #MeToo era, the Bond franchise will need to evolve with the time to remain relevant, primarily focusing more on women.

To achieve that, Bond producers have added the feminist TV writer Phoebe Waller-Bridge in its ranks who has emerged as one of the most brilliant writers through her series Fleabag and Killing Eve. Walter-Bridge will be writing the untitled Bond 25 movie that’s set to be released next year.

“There’s been a lot of talk about whether or not [the Bond franchise] is relevant now because of who he is and the way he treats women,” Waller-Bridge told Deadline in May. “I think that’s bollocks. I think he’s absolutely relevant now. It has just got to grow. It has just got to evolve, and the important thing is that the film treats the women properly. He doesn’t have to. He needs to be true to this character.” 

Furthermore, Craig, who’s the latest James Bond, has been saying for years that he is looking to retire the character. There has been much debate as to whether his successor should be a female or a person of color. However, executive producer Barbara Broccoli said in an interview last fall that Bond was created male and she intended to keep the character male while adding more female characters to the story around him.

Broccoli’s point seems valid since the franchise should instead create a female character within the franchise without the same problematic characteristics of James Bond and let her shine on her own limelight, and not from the flurry of men before her.

In a recent report, an insider from Bond 25 confirmed that Lynch would be taking on the famous 007. Lynch previously gained fame in her role in the 2019 Captain Marvel movie and is also British. Meanwhile, Bond superfans can relax as, as aforementioned, she will only be taking on the codename and not the Bond name.

The story begins with Bond retired in Jamaica. But spymaster M – played by Ralph Fiennes – calls him back in desperation to tackle a new global crisis.

‘There is a pivotal scene at the start of the film where M says ‘Come in 007,’ and in walks Lashana who is black, beautiful and a woman. It’s a popcorn-dropping moment. Bond is still Bond, but he’s been replaced as 007 by this stunning woman,” the insider says.

“Bond, of course, is sexually attracted to the new female 007 and tries his usual seduction tricks, but is baffled when they don’t work on a brilliant, young black woman who basically rolls her eyes at him and has no interest in jumping into his bed. Well, certainly not at the beginning.”

There will be changes on how Bond girls becoming forbidden, and they are meant to be addressed as Bond women—making a sharp right on how these women are presumed as objects of gratification to people who deserve respect.

“This is a Bond for the modern era who will appeal to a younger generation while sticking true to what we all expect in a Bond film,’ the source added. ‘There are spectacular chase sequences and fights, and Bond is still Bond but he’s having to learn to deal with the world of #MeToo.”

The 25th film in the franchise will also feature Rami Malek, Billy Magnussen, David Dencik, Dali Benssalah, Ralph Fiennes, Rory Kinnear, Ben Whishaw, Naomie Harris, and Jeffrey Wright.

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