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James Bond No Time to Die actress Lashana Lynch’s licence to push 007 films forward

·2-min read
 (AP)
(AP)

Bond actress Lashana Lynch has spoken about her role as the franchise’s first black female 007, saying it will “push the needle forward” in terms of representation.

The west London star, 33, plays the mysterious Nomi in No Time to Die, which will be Daniel Craig’s last outing as James Bond. She is thought to play a new 007 after Bond retires from MI6.

The film’s world premiere, which was delayed for more than a year due to Covid, takes place at the Royal Albert Hall tonight, with Prince Charles, the Duchess of Cornwall and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge attending.

Speaking ahead of the screening, Lynch revealed more about her character and how important she is for the franchise and cinema as a whole.

She said: “Nomi is so overly confident and suave and ready to take over the world. As soon as she became a 00 agent, she was ready to put her stamp on what it means to be a black woman in MI6, to represent her community, much like I do in my own life, and to actually give people a run for their money.

“To be vocal and opinionated and listened to and considered, and push the needle forward both as a character in cinema but also in the film. She really challenges Bond to think in a way that he may not have thought like before.”

On The One Show, Lynch also detailed how her family reacted to her “once in a lifetime” role. “There was a lot of screaming,” she said. “I am a working-class Jamaican girl from west London. Opportunities like this are once in a lifetime. It felt like the best thing that could ever happen to my family. I kept it a secret for a long time. When I did reveal it they were ecstatic and elated that something like this had happened in our lineage — now we had a legacy that could continue forever.”

The movie’s producer Barbara Broccoli said: “We’re really proud of this movie. We are confident it delivers.” The film — the 25th instalment of the Bond franchise — was originally due to hit screens in April last year. It was pushed back twice but will now be released on Thursday in the UK. It also features Léa Seydoux as Bond’s on-off love interest Madeleine Swann and Rami Malek as villain Safin.

Many hope Bond will encourage a spike in cinema-goers returning to the big screen post-pandemic.

Phil Clapp, chief executive of the UK Cinema Association, said: “It’s a big film in any year and particularly with Daniel Craig as Bond. The fact the film has been delayed has probably only added to the excitement.”

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