Despite famously vowing in 2015 that he would rather “slash my wrists” than make another James Bond movie, Daniel Craig confirmed he will return as the suave British superspy.
Appearing Tuesday night on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” the talk-show host told the actor, “You’ve been reported to have accepted the role of James Bond again,” referring to a New York Times article in July.
“I’ve been quite cagey about it,” the British actor, 49, admitted. “I’ve been doing interviews all day and people have been asking me and I think I’ve been rather coy, but I kind of felt like . . . if I was gonna speak the truth, I should speak the truth to you,” he teased.
When Colbert straight-out asked, “Daniel Craig, will you return as James Bond?,” he responded, “Yes,” triggering a wildly cheering audience response. Thanking the crowd, he smiled and said, “I couldn’t be happier.” He apologized “to all the people I’ve done interviews with today, because I wanted to tell you.”
The Facebook page of the James Bond rights-holders posted Wednesday that, “Daniel Craig will return as 007 in Bond 25,” the designation for the upcoming film, scheduled for release in the United States on Nov. 8, 2019, “with a traditional early release in the UK and the rest of the world.” This will be Craig’s fifth outing in the role, following “Casino Royale” (2006), “Quantum of Solace” (2008), “Skyfall” (2012) and “Spectre” (2015).
“Forget ‘shaken, not stirred,’ ” tweeted “Late Show’s” official account Wednesday morning, using the familiar phrase describing how Bond takes his martini. “We’re just plain shook.”
Craig, whose caper comedy “Logan Lucky,” directed by Steven Soderbergh, opens Friday, said he has known for “a couple of months.” He and the producers have “been discussing it, and we’ve just been trying to sort of figure things out.
“But I always wanted to,” he maintained. “I [simply] needed a break.”
Colbert challenged him on this, reminding of the TimeOut London interview Craig gave during the “Spectre” press tour, in which he said, “I’d rather break this glass and slash my wrists” than take on the role again. He went on to say, “I’m over it at the moment. We’re done. All I want to do is move on.”
“Look, there’s no point in making excuses about it,” Craig told Colbert. “But it was two days after I finished shooting the last movie. I went straight into an interview and someone said, ‘Would you do another one?’ And I went, ‘No!’ And instead of saying something with style and grace, I gave a really stupid answer.”
But this time for sure, he added near the end of his 10-minute appearance, “No, I think this is it. This is it, yeah. I just want to go out on a high note and I can’t wait.”