Will Pierce Brosnan return as 007? After all the denials, he may return for two more films

Pierce Brosnan, Goldeneye
Credit: Goldeneye: ©United Artists/Everett Collection

Would all the nice young British actors please put down those martini glasses and step away from the Aston Martin? According to a report in Variety magazine, rumors that Pierce Brosnan’s reign as 007 has come to an end may have been premature.

Speculation about who’ll play the title role in the next James Bond film has been simmering for months, reaching a fever pitch in the last few days as Sony completes its deal to acquire MGM, the studio behind the Bond franchise. While British tabloids this week reported little-known Daniel Craig (Enduring Love) was about to ink a deal to play the dashing British agent, Variety quoted U.S. sources as saying he was no more a frontrunner than previously mentioned hopefuls Clive Owen, Dominic West, Gerard Butler, and Julian McMahon.

Furthermore, the entertainment trade publication reported on other sources as saying Brosnan — who has played Bond in the series’ last four films — was back in the picture, working on a $40 million deal with the Broccoli family (who control the franchise) to return to the coveted role for two more pictures. Other rumors had Brosnan returning for only one film, which would be followed in quick succession by a second flick introducing a new 007.

MGM denied any decision had been made, while Brosnan’s reps denied the actor was in negotiations to die another day.