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No Time To Die writer Phoebe Waller-Bridge says she would not be in favour of a female Bond

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Phoebe Waller-Bridge has said she would not be in favour of a female Bond and that a new character needed to be created to “rival him”.

The acclaimed creator of Fleabag was drafted in to work on the No Time To Die script and walked the red carpet at the film’s glittering Royal Albert Hall premiere on Tuesday.

She said: “I think Bond is James Bond. We just need to cook up someone to rival him.”

When asked if she could be the one to create such a character, she laughed and said: “I have to be careful what I say.”

Waller-Bridge, known for her razor-sharp humour and offbeat style, worked closely with Bond producer Barbara Broccoli and director Cary Joji Fukunaga.

Explaining her role in No Time To Die, she said: “They asked me to come on board to add to the pot they were already working on.

“There was already a script, they had some things they wanted to go in a different direction with, they wanted the character work to be even deeper and look into more nuance in the characters.

“It was really an overall look at the whole script with them, to be able to work with Cary, who was also writing on it while he was in deeper prep with other things.

“It was to support them as much as come up with new stuff and throw it at them and see if they liked it. That was a wonderful experience because it was a collaboration but it wasn’t fully my vision.

“So I could say, ‘does this work for you? Does this work for you?’ And I’m really, really excited to see that some of it did work for them and it’s on the screen.”

Waller-Bridge’s comment comes after Daniel Craig also said he did not think the role of Bond should be given to a woman, but that better roles need to be offered to women and people of colour in the film industry.

He told the Radio Times: “There should simply be better parts for women and actors of colour. Why should a woman play James Bond when there should be a part just as good as James Bond, but for a woman?”

Broccoli confirmed the hunt for the next 007 has not yet started and would not begin until next year.

A number of actors have been tipped to replace Craig, including Mad Max star Tom Hardy, Bridgerton’s Rege-Jean Page and Luther’s Idris Elba.

The film will be released in UK cinemas on 30 September.

Additional reporting by PA

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