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British hunk formally offered role of James Bond and ‘will sign contract this week’ to take over from Daniel Craig

BRIT actor Aaron Taylor-Johnson is taking his martinis shaken, not stirred, after being formally offered the job as the new James Bond.

Insiders said the Kick-Ass movie star is expected to accept the role as 007, taking over from Daniel Craig, who has played MI6’s most famous spy for 15 years.

Here’s what Aaron Taylor-Johnson could look like as the next 007 amid news he’s been formally offered the role of James Bond

Aaron made a name for himself in 2010’s Kick-AssAlamy

He then landed the role of Quicksilver in the Marvel Cinematic UniverseRex Features

Eon Productions, which makes the spy thriller films, is on course to start shooting this year.

A source said: “Bond is Aaron’s job, should he wish to accept it. The formal offer is on the table and they are waiting to hear back.

“As far as Eon is concerned, Aaron is going to sign his contract in the coming days and they can start preparing for the big announcement.”

The next Bond movie had been delayed because of last year’s Hollywood strikes.

But insiders confirmed a script was now being worked on, with production scheduled to take place at Pinewood Studios in Buckinghamshire.

Aaron, 33, was in the running for the top job alongside actors including Oscar-winning Cillian Murphy, Idris Elba, Henry Cavill and James Norton.

Today, bookie Coral changed the odds on Aaron taking on the famous role — first played by Sean Connery in 1962’s Dr No —  and made him favourite at 2/1.

When asked last week whether he would step into Bond’s shoes, Aaron said: “I find it charming and wonderful that people see me in that role. I take it as a great compliment.”

In 2022, The Sun revealed that he was in the running for the job after secretly screen testing for Bond movie supremo Barbara Broccoli at Pinewood Studios.

Aaron, who is from High Wycombe, Bucks, made a name for himself starring in the Kick-Ass and Avengers movies.

Aaron and Brad Pitt starred together in 2022’s Bullet TrainRex Features

He started his acting career in 2000’s The Apocalypse, opposite Richard Harris, and appeared in 2008 teen movie Angus, Thongs And Perfect Snogging and 2022’s Bullet Train with Brad Pitt.

Insiders said Aaron’s performance as a psychopath in 2016 thriller Nocturnal Animals, which saw him win a Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor, opened the door to the Bond role.

A source said: “Aaron may not be the best known in his field but he is an incredibly talented actor.

“His role in Nocturnal Animals showed his depth as an actor.

“He is the perfect person to play Bond and will pick up well from where Daniel left off.”

Craig, 56, put down his Walther PPK pistol for the final time after 2021’s No Time To Die.

It ended with a shocking finale in which Bond is apparently killed off.

So with 007 seemingly dead, it is unclear where the next movie will fit in the timeline.

The last film made more than £600million at the global box office.

Daniel also starred in 2006’s Casino Royale, Quantum Of Solace in 2008, 2012’s Skyfall and Spectre in 2015.

But he grew to resent the role and came under fire for saying he would rather “slash my wrists” than play 007 again.

Aaron’s relationship with wife Sam has attracted attention, as she is 23 years older than himMike Marsland / WireImage

A nineteen-year-old Aaron with director Sam back in 2009Rex Features

Aaron’s personal life has previously generated more interest than his acting career.

He married filmmaker Sam Taylor-Wood, 57, in June 2012, four years after they met on the set of Nowhere Boy — which she directed and he starred in.

When they started dating, Aaron was 18 and Sam was 42.

Talking about their relationship, Aaron said: “I think we’re really great at collaborating but that’s not why I fell in love with her.

“I’ve got really nothing to hide and I’m secure in what we have.”

Aaron and Fifty Shades of Grey director Sam married at private member’s club Babington House in Somerset and have two daughters, Wylda, 13, and Romy, 11.

He is also stepfather to Sam’s two daughters, Angelica, 25, and Jessie, 15, from her marriage to art dealer Jay Jopling.

Aaron has said of life as a parent: “I enjoy the normality of things, the everyday stuff.

“Getting my kids ready in the mornings, taking them to school and activities. That feeds my soul.

“I knew I was going to have a big family. I knew I was going to be a young father. I knew I was going to have many kids.”

Sam spoke about falling for Aaron on the Nowhere Boy set but insisted nothing happened until filming had ended.

She said: “I managed to hold off really until almost the end of the film.

“We weren’t even together then. Maybe feelings were there but un-acted upon.

“The thing is, we had quite a psychic link when working together.

“I knew from a flicker of an eyelash what kind of performance I was going to get.

“I felt that link almost from day one of meeting him.”

The couple, who live in London, are rarely seen together in public but often share photos of one another on social media.

Aaron celebrated Sam’s birthday last week with a black and white picture of them together.

He posted: “You’re an exceptional woman, there’s really no one quite like you. I couldn’t be more proud and excited for this year ahead.”

Sam has directed Back to Black, the Amy Winehouse biopic, which is out on April 12.

Aaron has a new Marvel film, Kraven the Hunter, out later this year.

Bond boss Barbara previously confirmed they would be casting a man in the 007 role despite calls for a woman to step in.

She said in 2020:  “James Bond can be of any colour, but he is male. I believe we should be creating new characters for women.”

STARS NO TIME TO VIE

A HOST of actors had been in the running to be the next 007.

Irish star Cillian Murphy, 47, was tipped after his win at the Oscars.

Oppenheimer co-star Clay Bunker backed him and said: “Cillian’s the nicest but has that dark side like Bond.”

Theo James, who stars in new Netflix series The Gentlemen, was also in the running.

But the White Lotus actor, 39, said he feared the role.

DC Superman Henry Cavill, 40, was also linked to Bond, having previously auditioned for Daniel Craig’s role.

Casino Royale director Martin Campbell said: “If Daniel didn’t exist, Henry would’ve made an excellent Bond.”

Happy Valley’s James Norton, 38, was in the running for the spy lead but when asked about the possibility he said: “I’d love to play a Bond villain.”

Idris Elba, 51, had been voted the top man for the role by loyal Bond fans.

But The Wire actor said the prospect had soured because of a racist backlash to rumours of him landing the gig.

SIX ACTORS WHO HAVE PLAYED 007

Sean Connery was the first ever Bond, though he didn’t match author Ian Fleming’s visionGetty

SEAN Connery was the first James Bond.

He made his debut in 1962’s Dr No, starring in seven 007 films until 1983.

But he was not 007 creator Ian Fleming’s choice.

He thought the 6ft 2in Scot was not refined enough for the role.

George Lazenby was only in one Bond flick20th Century Fox

AUSTRALIAN actor George Lazenby played Bond just once in 1969’s On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.

He never signed a contract for the role and was reportedly persuaded by his agent not to stay on as the character would soon seem outdated.

Roger Moore picked up the role for the Seventies and bowed out with A View To A KillRex Features

ROGER Moore made his debut as 007 in 1973’s Live And Let Die and stayed for seven films.

A TV actor, he was known as Simon Templar in The Saint and in The Persuaders!.

His last outing was 1985’s A View To A Kill.

Timothy Dalton played Bond only twice, and wanted to give a darker edge to the character20th Century Fox

TIMOTHY Dalton played Bond only twice, once in 1987’s The Living Daylights and later in 1989’s Licence To Kill.

His portrayal was darker and more serious than his predecessors, with the actor wanting him to be less of a womaniser.

Pierce Brosnan pushed for Bond to stop smokingAlamy

PIERCE Brosnan made his 007 debut in 1995’s GoldenEye and went on to play the spy three more times.

He pushed for Bond to stop smoking, saying: “Smoking causes cancer therefore he doesn’t smoke.”

His last film was 2002’s Die Another Day.

Daniel Craig is the most recent Bond, and stayed in the role for a decade and a halfAlamy

DANIEL Craig revamped the James Bond franchise with 2006’s Casino Royale.

Fans were initially not happy with his casting, setting up a petition against it.

But he became a much-loved 007, ending with 2021’s No Time To Die.

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