Fiennes was installed as 007's new boss M in 2012's Skyfall but now he has confessed it was not the first time he tried to land a part in the long-running franchise.
The Schindler's List star had talks with producer Albert 'Cubby' Broccoli over the vacant role of Bond in the mid-1990s, but he lost out on the chance to be Timothy Dalton's successor - and he is convinced he would have been terrible as 007 anyway.
Fiennes tells British magazine Seven, "There was an early conversation. There was a conversation that was great, and a meeting with Cubby Broccoli, that was terrific. I think that's all I can really say, except that it didn't lead to anything on both sides. I don't think I felt ready to commit and I think they were looking at Pierce. I think I would have been a terrible Bond anyway."