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August 28, 2015

How About 'James Bond: The TV Series?'

by Bob Sassone, posted Apr 20th 2010 4:05PM
James Bond logoSo MGM announced yesterday that the next James Bond movie -- number 23, if you're keeping track -- has been put on hold "indefinitely" because the studio is for sale and they have no idea what's going on with it.

This is scary stuff. It reminds me of those awful years when everything was put on hold so long that Timothy Dalton said "the heck with this, yo" and left and they were without a Bond for a while. Everything turned out OK, as Pierce Brosnan was Bond for several flicks and then Daniel Craig for the reboot. Let's hope that things get settled before everyone decides to move on.

But it got me thinking: isn't it about time we had a 007 TV series? Why not?

Daniel Craig as James BondJames Bond has been on TV before. In fact, Bond made his debut on television, not the movies, in the "Casino Royale" episode of the CBS anthology series 'Climax!' in 1954. He was played by an American actor, Barry Nelson, and went by the name Jimmy Bond, so let's be glad they never made a movie featuring those changes.

Maybe if they made a prequel to the Bond movies, featuring Bond as a five year-old battling villains Dr. No Don't Touch That It's Hot and Goldfingerpainting in pre-school, they could call him "Jimmy," but it doesn't work for a tuxedoed Brit ordering a Vodka Martini in a Paris bar.

But 'James Bond' would make for an excellent TV series. Or maybe with '24' ending we'd have to go with title '007.' Network art departments could have some fun with that logo. It would be interesting if they did the books again, only do them in order and keep the plots very close to the way Ian Fleming wrote them.

A Bond series would be too expensive? Good! We don't need all of the over-the-top stuff you see in a lot of the Bond movies. Maybe keeping the budget in check will keep the scripts in check. I'm leaning towards having this on cable and not FOX or NBC, for 20 different reasons.

And can you imagine the press kits they'd send out for a James Bond TV series? <drool>

Though who would play 007 on TV? Let's assume that Daniel Craig (an excellent Bond) wouldn't want to be tied down to a weekly TV series, who else could step into the agent's shoes?

Naveen Andrews on LostHow about 'Miami Medical' star Jeremy Northam? 'Lost's' Naveen Andrews has shown he has the physical chops for the role, not to mention the accent. Recent 'Dancing with the Stars' contestant Aiden Turner hinted that he'd like to be the next James Bond. I think his subtle words were something along the lines of "I'd like to be the next James Bond." Simon Baker from 'The Mentalist?' Goran Visnjic? Andy Whitfield from 'Spartacus: Blood & Sand?'

And let's throw Kiefer Sutherland into the mix, shall we? Yeah, he's American, but he's been THE spy on television for the past several years so you know he'd be mentioned in such a scenario. Since we're listing Sutherland, we also have to list Jeffrey Donovan.

This would usually be the part where I should be completely PC and list a couple of women too, just to be balanced and all that, but that's not going to happen. I know, I know, call me a "sexist misogynist dinosaur" -- to quote Judi Dench's M in 'Goldeneye' -- but Bond should be played by a guy.

If They Did A James Bond TV Series, Who Should Play 007?
Daniel Craig61 (15.2%)
Naveen Andrews32 (8.0%)
Jeremy Northam42 (10.4%)
Alex O'Loughlin20 (5.0%)
Kiefer Sutherland23 (5.7%)
Aiden Turner14 (3.5%)
Jeffrey Donovan15 (3.7%)
Simon Baker71 (17.7%)
Goran Visnjic26 (6.5%)
Jon Hamm21 (5.2%)
Andy Whitfield56 (13.9%)
Other (say in comments)21 (5.2%)

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why isnt pierce brosnan in the list, hes awesome as bond!

November 20 2012 at 7:58 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Jeremy Northam would be the best James Bond ever!!!
Watch him in "The Winslow Boy" on youtube, absolutely incredible!!! And he can sing too!!!

April 22 2010 at 9:50 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Remember the Matt Helm spy spoof film series that starred Dean Martin? The original novels were serious not unlike the Fleming novels. A TV series was based on the movies starring Tony Franciosa. The powers that be changed the character from a spy into a detective. Needless to say it only lasted a few episodes. James Bond needs to remain on the movie screen.

April 21 2010 at 8:28 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Ugggghhhhhh.... I mean, yech! Here's the problem: If you take James Bond and make him have to do the weekly adventure thing, you make him more or less indistinguishable from every other spy on tv. Because tv thrives on characters, you need to build a supporting cast of regulars around him, and that keeps him from being the lone wolf that makes him so unique. And to be clear, by supporting cast! I mean more than just M, Q and Moneypenny.

Really, if you want Bond on tv, maybe there's one way to do it: take Jim out of the field. Maybe the years of nearly getting killed have caught up with him and he's now in a wheelchair, running a team of spies from some central command. The hook of the show would be that he serves as a mentor to them, but often his advice is so morally questionable that they struggle with whether fulfilling the mission according to his game plan will corrupt them.

But it's still a bad idea even then. Really, the best way to save Bond is to buy it back from MGM and sell it to another studio. And I mean pretty much any other studio.

April 21 2010 at 6:30 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I actually thought something similar when I re-read all the Ian Flemming books 2 or 3 years ago.

That it would be awesome if HBO and BBC did a 12 two hour episode miniseries of all the original books, in period setting. They would all work really well like that I think.

April 21 2010 at 6:00 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Sir Yuck-Yuck

Sutherland was born in London, England, the son of Donald Sutherland and Shirley Douglas, both of whom are successful Canadian actors. He has Scottish ancestry from both parents and is the grandson of Canadian politician Tommy Douglas, who brought universal health care to Canada. Sutherland and his twin sister, Rachel, were born in London (in Saint Mary's Hospital, Paddington) while his parents were working there. As a result, he is both a British citizen and a Canadian citizen

April 20 2010 at 11:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Enver Gjokaj: Victor from Dollhouse

April 20 2010 at 10:49 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Scott Watkins

Not to pick nits, but Kiefer's a Canadian.

If they cast him, it should be Jim Bond, he should have a tricked out snowmobile and a mackinaw with secret pockets.

"It's Bond, Jim Bond, eh? Gimme a vodka martini. Aw jeez, don't just stir it arownd, what are ya new? Shake it like like it owes ya money!"

April 20 2010 at 9:22 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Enver Gjokaj!

April 20 2010 at 8:24 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to litehousebeacon's comment

oh yeah totally. he could pull it off easy.

April 20 2010 at 9:19 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

You want Kiefer Sutherland to play James Bond? What is wrong with you? People who don't understand James Bond should not write speculative articles about James Bond.

April 20 2010 at 7:17 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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