Last month Naomie Harris (28 Days Later, Pirates of the Caribbean) confirmed that she had met with director Sam Mendes and producer Barbara Broccoli regarding a role in Bond 23. Some thought she’d be up for the Bond girl role, but now it looks like the actress will be playing Moneypenny.
According to The Daily Mail (via Playlist) Harris is “poised” to appear in Bond 23 as Moneypenny, which means she isn’t confirmed yet but it’s likely. Moneypenny, secretary to M (Judi Dench), hasn’t been seen in a Bond movie since Samantha Bond played her in Die Another Day back in 2002. The casting of Naomie Harris suggests Sam Mendes will be doing something different with the character, and she’ll probably have a larger role than in previous films (possibly getting out of the office environment in the process).
The site also suggests Javier Bardem and Ralph Fiennes, who were previously thought to be up for roles, are locked. With The Dark Tower delayed until next year it appears Bardem has been freed up for Bond. No details have been revealed as to whom he will play, although Bardem confirmed it would be a villain. Bardem played a villain in his Oscar-winning turn in No Country For Old Men two years ago so he’s no stranger to this type of role.
As for Ralph Fiennes, next seen as Voldemort in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, his role is said to be ‘a darkly complex’ one, and Mendes approached him because “the part is one of extreme complexity and only an actor of great ability and dexterity can take it on”.
Filming is set to begin later this year for an October 2012 release, and with a cast like this Bond 23 is looking very promising.