Odds shorten on Matt Smith for next James Bond

Former Doctor Who star Matt Smith has had his odds slashed by bookies in the race to become the replacement for Daniel Craig as 007, James Bond himself.

The 39-year-old Brit has seen the odds on him becoming Bond shorten from 40/1 to just 20/1 in a week, with commentators citing his starring performance in Game of Thrones prequel House of the Dragon as the reason for the rapid shift in the betting market.

Smith, who became the Eleventh Doctor in the BBC’s science fiction series Doctor Who in 2010 has had a very successful acting career and not only received acclaim for his time in the TARDIS, but also for his portrayal of Prince Phillip opposite Claire Foy in the first two season’s of the Netflix smash hit show The Crown.

However, in recent months his star has risen even further on the international stage after taking on the central role of Daemon Targaryen in HBO’s House of the Dragon opposite a stellar cast including Paddy Considine, Emma D’Arcy, Olivia Cooke and Rhys Ifans to name a few. It is thought that the extremely positive reviews and coverage he has had for this latest role has helped shortened bookies’ odds for the Bond role as speculation continues to grow about the next 007.

Current favourites to succeed Daniel Craig include Bridgerton star Rege-Jean Page, Henry Cavill and Tom Hardy – but with so many actors in the mix for one of the most famous roles in movies, it feels like it could be anyone’s guess still who becomes 007 next.

Tony Kenny head of sponsorship PR at William Hill said: “The recent success of House of Dragon was bound to shake up the Bond market, but Matt Smith seeing his odds half for the role is clearly a major shift – one that’s worth paying attention to given the keen fan backing.

“He’s of the right age to take on the role, and has proven he’s a diverse and talented actor – and he’s no stranger to taking on an iconic British character, either.”