Monica Bellucci, who has been cast alongside Daniel Craig in the latest Bond movie Spectre, initially believed she was auditioning to replace Judi Dench.
Bellucci, 50, said she had been summoned to meet director Sam Mendes to discuss a role in the upcoming film, reported Daily Telegraph.
"I just blurted out: I'm not a girl, I'm a woman, I'm a mature woman. Do I have to replace Judi Dench? 'Why do you
call me? I'm 50 years old. What am I going to do in James Bond?'," she said.
"He said, 'For the first time in history, James Bond is going to have a story with a mature woman. The concept is revolutionary'," she added.
Bellucci added she had told Mendes he would be a "hero among women" for taking a stand for older actresses, after deciding her wanted a woman of a similar age to Bond to play alongside him.