Speculation about the identity of the next James Bond actor has been raging for what seems like forever, but one of the executive producers of the movies has hinted that they very much want Daniel Craig to remain in the role.

“I know they’re hoping for him to come back,” executive producer Callum McDougall told BBC Radio 4’s ‘Today’ programme on Friday (September 30th). He has worked on nine James Bond movies, including the four that Daniel Craig has starred in – Casino Royale, Quantum of Solace, Skyfall and Spectre.

Daniel CraigBond chiefs want Daniel Craig to return as 007

The favourites for betting on who the next Bond actor might be have been ever-changing since Craig hinted that Spectre might be his final turn as 007. In 2015, he claimed he’d “rather slash my wrists” rather than play Bond again.

The expectation that the franchise might turn over to another actor was ramped up after the departure of director Sam Mendes, who helmed the last two Bond movies, which were both incredibly successful in commercial terms.

More: Is $150 million enough to persuade Daniel Craig to play 007 for two more movies?

Recent reports suggested that Craig has been offered an eye-watering $150 million to star in two more Bond movies – but subsequent reports have denied this.

The likes of Idris Elba, Tom Hiddleston and James Norton have all been touted at various points in time as the favourite to take over the role – indeed, former UKIP leader Nigel Farage was jokingly linked to the part at 1,000/1 at one bookmaker!

MacDougall was also asked about the potential identity of the next actor, but he didn’t mention any specific names, merely answering “I wish I knew.”

He was speaking on Radio 4 as part of the 80th anniversary of London’s Pinewood Studios, the location at which nearly every Bond movie has some sort of connection with. “It's literally a dream factory,” said McDougall, who has been a part of the Bond movies since 1987’s The Living Daylights. “People will be staggered by the films we've made here.”

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