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Oscar-winner Rami Malek the front-runner to play villain in James Bond 25, possible title revealed

Oscar-winner Rami Malek is in final negotiations to play the villain in the upcoming 25th James Bond film, starring Daniel Craig. A possible title has also been floated around the internet.

hollywood Updated: Feb 28, 2019 15:00 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
Rami Malek,James Bond,James Bond 25
Daniel Craig might face-off against Rami Malek in Bond 25.

Oscar-winner Rami Malek is in final negotiations to play the main villain in the upcoming 25th James Bond film. Collider reports that the Bohemian Rhapsody actor is director Cary Joji Fukunaga’s first choice to play the villain opposite Daniel Craig, who will play Bond for the fifth and final time. Lupita N’yongo is being eyed for a lead role, and Billy Magnussen is being considered to play a top CIA operative.

Multiple reports online suggest that the film will be titled Shatterhand, although this remains to be confirmed. It was previously reported that Malek is being considered, but the final call would be taken based on his availability. The actor was occupied by the shooting of his hit TV show, Mr Robot.

Rami Malek arrives for the 91st Annual Academy Awards at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood. ( AFP )

Collider says that Malek’s representatives have successfully negotiated a shooting schedule that will accommodate both projects. Actor Said Taghmaoui (Wonder Woman) had previously said that he had been hired to play the villain when the film was under the direction of Danny Boyle. The Oscar-winning director quit the project last year, after which Fukunaga, known for his work on the first season of True Detective, became the first American to direct a Bond film.

Taghmaoui is of Moroccan descent, while Malek is of Egyptian descent. This provides possible clues as to where the villain might be from, and maybe even the potential plot of the film.

Bond 25 will feature returning actors Lea Seydoux, Ben Whishaw, Naomie Harris and Ralph Fiennes. It was recently reported that Bourne writer Scott Z Burns has been hired to do last-minute rewrites on the scrip by Bond veterans Neal Purvis and Robert Wade.

Bond 25 is scheduled for an April 2020 release date. Malek won the Academy Award for his performance as Freddie Mercury in the controversial Queen biopic, Bohemian Rhapsody. Craig has played Bond in four films so far, including Casino Royale, Quantum of Solace, Skyfall and Spectre.

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First Published: Feb 28, 2019 14:59 IST