After the release of No Time to Die this November, Craig will have portrayed the debonair spy in five films over the span of nearly 15 years.
Speculation has been rife for years as to who would take over the mantle from Craig, with Idris Elba frequently cited as a frontrunner.
In a new public poll conducted by the Radio Times, however, Elba was beaten by Heughan, the Scottish actor who previously played a Bond-like secret agent in the 2018 comedy The Spy Who Dumped Me.
Heughan has previously said on ITV chat show This Morning that playing Bond would be “a dream role”. The actor even auditioned for the part for 2006’s franchise re-boot Casino Royale – losing out to Craig.
With 30 per cent of the vote, Heughan was the clear winner of the poll, receiving more than twice as many votes as the runner-up, Tom Hardy (with 14 per cent).
No Time to Die is scheduled to be released in cinemas on 12 November 2020, having been delayed by months due to the coronavirus pandemic.
While there have been calls for the next Bond to be played by a woman, or a non-white actor, nine of the top ten favourite candidates were white men (with Elba being the exception).
Here is the Radio Times‘ full list of the top ten candidates:
1. Sam Heughan (30 per cent)
2. Tom Hardy (14 per cent)
3. Henry Cavill (11 per cent)
4. Idris Elba (10 per cent)
5. Tom Hiddleston (five per cent)
6. Richard Madden (four per cent)
7. Michael Fassbender (three per cent)
8. Aidan Turner (three per cent)
9. Cillian Murphy (three per cent)
10. James Norton (three per cent)
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