Rumors have swirled for years that Elba, 46, is in the running to replace Daniel Craig and become the first black 007.
Academy Award-winner Dench — who played spymaster M in the Bond movies until the death of her character in 2012’s “Skyfall” — threw her support behind the star of “The Wire” and “Luther” in a new interview with Britain’s Daily Telegraph newspaper published Friday.
“Oh I think he would be a brilliant Bond,” Dench said of Elba, whom she worked alongside in the upcoming film version of composer Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical “Cats.”
Dench also revealed how the pair shared a Bond-themed joke on set:
“When we filmed ‘Cats’ he kept saying to me ‘Will you send me to the Heaviside Layer?’ And at one point I turned to him and said: ‘No – I’ll send you to MI6’.”
Elba has previously played down speculation that he’ll portray the fictional British spy. Last August, he responded to a reporter’s question about being the next 007 with just one word: “No.” He didn’t help matters, however, when he teased fans with this image and Bond-themed caption on Twitter.
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