Despite two years of uncertainty and professed exasperation over the role from the star himself, Daniel Craig’s James Bond will return in … the franchise’s 25th official film, according to the New York Times.
Eon Productions and MGM Studios announced the release date—Nov. 8, 2019—for the next Bond film on Monday afternoon via Twitter. Eon and MGM have yet to officially announce, but the Times’ source is quoted as saying that Craig’s return is a “done deal.”
After a grueling shoot and sublime reviews for his last turn as the international spy, Spectre, Craig seemed done with the role. During press for Spectre, Craig told Time Out that he would sooner “slash his wrists” than do another Bond movie at the moment. Craig later clarified his statements, saying that he was just feeling fatigued and that he had “the best job in the world.” Since 2016, murky reports have circulated concerning Craig’s contract to return as Bond—with some reporting that Craig was offered a $150 million contract. A list of names for potential new Bonds were also floated over the past two years, with Damian Lewis being the apparent favorite.
Assuming the announced date holds, Craig will be 51 years old when the film is released, making him the second oldest to have played 007 in an Eon Bond film. (Roger Moore was 58 when he played Bond in A View to a Kill.)