11-Sep-2018 • Bond 25
Taghmaoui, who has Morocan and French ancestry, has been fighting to avoid Middle Eastern 'baddie' stereotypes ever since he broke into Hollywood with 1999's Three Kings. He's since earned roles in I Heart Huckabees The Kite Runner, American Hustle and Wonder Woman.
“I’m supposed to do the next James Bond, playing the lead bad guy,” he told the paper, but admitted he too was shocked by the departure of Danny Boyle from the film.
"[O]f course there’s some uncertainty," he says of whether he's still got the role.
“We don’t know who the director will be, and the producers don’t know if they’re going to go Russian or Middle East with the baddie right now. I literally just received a message saying: ‘If they go Middle East, it’s you. If they go Russian, it’s someone else.’ It’s the story of my life. Always on that line between something that could change my life and something that disappears.” MI6 broke the news that the production was searching for a Russian lead villain back in July, and understands production is still on track to start in December, despite Daniel Craig signing up for a smaller Agatha Christie homage, 'Knives Out', shooting this year.