The adventures of British secret agent James Bond first came to the silver screen in 1962, and since the days of Dr. No, 007 has been played by seven different talented actors. Our current Bond, Daniel Craig, will be wrapping up his run as the legendary spy in the the forthcoming film No Time to Die. In the twenty-sixth installment of the James Bond series, 007 is confronted with an old love as well as a new enemy: a masked Rami Malek.
Following the events of the 2015 film Spectre, Bond has seemingly disappeared off of the face of the earth with his lover Dr. Madeleine Swann (Léa Seydoux) after foiling the plans of Ernst Stavro Blofeld (played by the brilliant Christoph Waltz) and terrorist organization SPECTRE. Years have passed, and he is forced out of retirement for a dangerous final mission that leads him to the creepiest villain he's encountered yet, a man named Safin.
Malek will play the villain, whose menacing aura is only underscored by the scars on his face and the Phantom of the Opera-esque mask he wears to cover them. Little is known about the antagonist or his intentions for Bond, but from the trailer, one might guess that Safin has something very nasty (and possibly supernatural?) up his sleeve. "Your skills die with your body," Malek narrates in the teaser. "Mine will survive long after I'm gone."
It seems that the minds behind the franchise followed the casual suggestion of Idris Elba (who was also a popular choice for the next 007), who posed the idea of Bond being something other than a typical white man. "Are we interested in having a Bond character other than being a male?" he asked. "It could be a woman — could be a Black woman, could be a white woman. Do something different with it. Why not?"
A string of familiar faces to the James Bond film series will return for the 2020 film, including Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris, Ben Whishaw, and David Dencik. Waltz and Seydoux will also reprise their roles.
Now facing the curtain, will Craig be able to pull off the best Bond film of his almost decade-long run as of of the most iconic characters in movie history? Fingers crossed, but if not, at least we (finally!) have a Black female Bond to look forward to.
No Time to Die hits theaters on April 8, 2020.