If Bond 25 is after a villain, Helen Mirren has just thrown her hat into the ring.
The iconic British actress has revealed that she has always secretly harboured the desire to play cat and mouse with 007.
“Women get to play much cooler villains these days,” she told Harper’s Bazaar.
“I’ve always had a secret ambition to play a villain in a James Bond movie. I consider myself a scaredy-cat. I’m constantly nervous. I’m always worried that I’m not going to do it right. But you have to just jump and then the adrenaline kicks in.”
Mirren has, of course, already shown her chops for playing an action movie villain.
She briefly appeared playing Magdalene Shaw, mother to Jason Statham’s rogue assassin Deckard Shaw and Luke Evans’ Owen Shaw in Fast & Furious 8.
Prior to her casting she’d appealed to the makers of the franchise to give her a shot.
“My great ambition is to be in a Fast and Furious movie. I so want to be a mad driver in a Fast and Furious movie. My claim to fame is I always do my own driving — I was on Top Gear, and I did [my lap] in a very good time. I keep putting it out there, and they never ask me. I’ll be in Fast and Furious 8. I have to say Vin Diesel is brilliant. I love Vin Diesel. He’s a great guy, smart — I love him. It’s partly because of him I’d like to be in one, but also the driving,” she told Yahoo Movies in the US.
So maybe it could work with Bond too… and judging by the Red movies, she knows her way around a handgun.
Mirren also went on to discuss the Royal Family, having famously played Queen Elizabeth II in 2007’s The Queen.
She remarks that while she did watch the recent royal wedding of Prince Harry to Meghan Markle while on a movie set, ‘I don’t care that much, though I do watch The Crown. I just think it’s beautifully realized’.
She also added that she is sometimes invited to royal events by the Queen herself, and recently attended ‘a horse thing’.
“I was in the paddock. In her old age, she has that indomitable spirit. I love her. I’m not a royalist; I’m a queenist,” she said.
Mirren next appears in Disney’s fantasy The Nutcracker and the Four Realms, based on Hoffman’s The Nutcracker and the Mouse King and Tchaikovsky’s ballet.
Also starring Keira Knightley, Richard E. Grant and Jack Whitehall, it’s due out next month.