Henry Cavill
Henry Cavill Image Credit: Twitter

Martin Campbell, who directed the massive hit James Bond movies ‘Golden Eye’ and ‘Casino Royale’, has said that the much-coveted role of the English womaniser-assassin-spy 007 would likely have been given to ‘Man of Steel’ actor Henry Cavill in the early 2000s if Daniel Craig hadn’t auditioned for it too.

Cavill had earlier revealed that he lost out on the role to Craig. But, Campbell’s statement makes the picture clear furnishing the reason behind Cavill’s ouster from the franchise.

In a recent interview with Express UK, Campbell said Cavill was “ironically too young” for the role, when auditions were held for the 2006 film ‘Casino Royale’ that introduced Craig’s 007.

The auditions for the role had come down to a few actors, notably Cavill, who was in his early 20s at the time, and Craig.

“He looked great in the audition,” Campbell told the publication. “His acting was tremendous. And look, if Craig didn’t exist Henry would have made an excellent Bond.

He looked terrific, he was in great physical shape a very handsome, very chiselled. He just looked a little young at that time back then.

“Cavill is now 40, and Campbell believes, however, that he could still potentially play the part of 007.

“By the time Daniel got to (‘No Time to Die’) really he was at an age where one more would have been too old for him,” he said.

“Henry’s 40, so by the time he’s done the third one he’s going to be 50 and anything beyond that’s two, three years per Bond. He’s in good shape Henry, he’s a good guy ...”

Campbell, 79, who is open to rebooting Bond a third time, also dispelled the rumour that he favoured Cavill — who is currently at 7-2 to be the next 007 — over Craig.

He said: “I wasn’t favouring Henry. The way they work with Bond and it’s pretty terrific is when they decide on the actor and you audition — in our case, it was eight people — it’s very democratic. You sit around a table, eight or nine of you.”

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It was myself and the producers, casting director, etc. And you go through the eight people and you put your hand up as you talk through each person and ultimately everybody has to be unanimous in their decision, if you see what I mean”, he added.

In a previous cover story with The Hollywood Reporter, Cavill said that he is open to the possibility of taking on the iconic role now that Craig’s tenure as 007 is over.

“I think it would be very exciting to have a conversation with the producers,” the actor said. “In an ideal world, I’d never have to turn anything down. Nothing is off the table. It’s an honour to even be part of that conversation.”