Stephen Hawking Wants to Play a James Bond Villain
Stephen Hawking may be the subject of a biopic poised for Oscar gold with ‘The Theory of Everything,’ but it turns out that the renowned theoretical physicist has very different cinematic aspirations. In fact, if the ‘Brief History of Time’ author has his way, he’d play a role typically reserved for menacing European character actors: a James Bond villain.
Although he’s obviously joking, Hawking told Wired (via The Telegraph) that his appearance makes him perfect for an enemy of 007. If anyone else had said that, they’d run the risk of being offensive. After all, Hawking was confined to a wheelchair after being diagnosed with motor neuron disease when he was a 21-year old student. All these years later, he’s still not afraid to poke fun at himself:
My ideal role would be a baddie in a James Bond film. I think the wheelchair and the computer voice would fit the part.
James Bond has faced a lot of unusual foes in over the past half-century, so a paralyzed genius who speaks in a computer voice actually wouldn’t be out of the ordinary (especially since he’d have an army of henchmen to do his dirty work). Among a rogues gallery that includes Donald Pleasance’s Blofeld, who made his secret base in a volcano, or Geoffrey Holder’s Baron Samedi, who fought Bond with the power of voodoo, he’d fit right in. In fact, Bond has faced a disabled villain before, having dropped a wheelchair-bound baddie into a smokestack in the opening scene of ‘For Your Eyes Only.’
Let’s get real for a moment: Hawking will likely never play a 007 villain. However, no one should underestimate his ability to slip into all aspects of popular culture. Hawking has appeared as himself on both ‘The Simpsons’ and ‘Star Trek: The Next Generation.’ The fact that he appeared as a hologram playing poker with Sir Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein in the latter is evidence of how the world views this guy. He’s our go-to modern genius.
Anyway, Eddie Redmayne has a strong shot at winning an Oscar for playing Hawking early next year, which will further cement his reputation the Most Famous Smart Guy In The World. And who knows? Maybe Hawking can use that Hollywood clout to get himself a role in a Bond movie. Hell, maybe the next Bond film could feature Redmayne playing Hawking playing the villain. Eat your heart out, Christoph Waltz. Whatever you do in ‘Bond 24’ won’t be that crazy.