Daniel Craig may have one more James Bond movie to go, but speculation is still rife over his replacement.
In fact there are calls among some fans for a woman to take on the role and the odds of a gender swap are currently at 12-1.
However 007 expert and historian Jeremy Black, who recently wrote The World of James Bond, is adamant a female 007 is out of the question for the next few decades at least.
The Professor of History at the University of Exeter told Fox News: “I can’t see why it shouldn’t happen. But I’ll tell you one reason I don’t think it’s going to happen.”
Black continued: “If you’re looking at James Bond as a commercial product, the leading film market in the world is the United States.
“And an increasing portion of the James Bond market is in the Far East, South Asia and in parts of the world where their values are different, shall we say.
“These are more male-centered societies. And in those societies, I think it would be a hard sell to have your leading secret agent as a female.
“Now that may well change in 20, 30 years’ time. But I think one has to be aware there are commercial reasons.”
He added: “My guess is that at some stage, they will go for a female James Bond If you look at the recent films, James Bond as a character has been having fewer female relationships.
“He’s become a serial monogamist. Whereas Roger Moore’s James Bond usually had multiple partners, one after the other, in the same film. Now, there’s generally one female partner and there’s very little emphasis on that side.
“James Bond doesn’t really smoke anymore. He drinks a little bit just to deliver his signature line. And while he has little to no sex, he kills far more people than ever before. It is a strange aspect of the political correctness of the character.”
He said: “Bond was a very modern man for the 1950s. This was the pre-pill age, but he admires women who offer sex, femininity and masculinity. His women are independent and driven.
“He is a far more complex and interesting character in the books than in the films.
“In the films the Bond girls are stunning, and with startling regularity acquiesce with a sigh of ‘Oh James’, which has fed 007’s reputation as an arch misogynist.”
James Bond 25 will be released in UK cinemas on February 14, 2020.