Daniel Craig has confirmed he's done playing James Bond after next year's No Time to Die. It's been just over four years since Craig's last appearance as Agent 007 in 2015's Spectre, the twenty-fourth James Bond film overall. Bond 25, as it's still frequently referred to, has taken longer than expected to come together since then, in part because its original director, Danny Boyle, stepped away due to creative differences last year. He was thereafter replaced by Cary Fukunaga of True Detective and Beasts of No Nation fame.
Production on No Time to Die went pretty smoothly and wrapped near the end of October, just over five months ahead of the film's scheduled release next April. The end of filming was all the more noteworthy because it's long been reported that Craig intends to call it a day on the franchise after this latest installment (his fifth time playing Bond altogether). Now, as the wait for the No Time to Die trailer continues, Craig has reaffirmed his plans to retire as 007.
Speaking to Express.de (h/t Anton Volkov), Craig confirmed he's done playing Bond after No Time to Die, saying "In the future someone else has to do it!" He also said he has no intention of directing a Bond film down the line, explaining "If you're a director, then at night you're still with the producers, screenwriters, and what do I know on the phone. And then after two hours of sleep, you have to go back up to the set. No thanks!"
Craig was infamously blunt about being tired of playing James Bond while he was promoting Spectre four years ago, even saying he would rather "slash his wrists" that consider doing another Bond film so soon. He's had some time to actually relax since then, but is clearly ready to move on from the franchise all the same, as evidenced by his latest comments. That's not to say he actually hates playing Bond; his previous statements, like his most recent ones, were always delivered with a healthy dose of dark and often self-deprecating humor. Nevertheless, Craig has always been pretty up-front about just how physically taxing the role really is, and (at 51) seems eager to leave his days of being an action movie star behind him.
As for Bond 26: Craig might not be planning to direct, but plans are already in motion for the film. The Bond franchise's producers are reportedly courting Fleabag creator/actor Phoebe Waller-Bridge to write the movie, after being heavily impressed by her work on the No Time to Die script. There hasn't been any word on who might potentially replace Craig as James Bond in the movie just yet, but that's to be expected. With No Time to Die serving as the actor's swan song in the role, the Bond series' producers will want to keep everyone's attention focused squarely on that and not on whatever comes next. Hopefully, the movie will send Craig's 007 out on a high note and, in doing so, pave the way for an exciting new era of Bond.