Lashana Lynch Says She Suffered 'Abuse' After Being Cast as 007

Lashana Lynch says stepping into 007’s shoes as a Black woman was anything but easy. In July 2019, it was reported that Lynch’s character, Nomi, in the upcoming James Bond movie, No Time to Die, would be taking the beloved spy’s license to kill, making her the first female and the first person of color to take on the role of 007.

However, Lynch tells  Harper’s Bazaar U.K. that the historic news led to her deleting her social media apps after an onslaught of criticism. The 32-year-old British actress recalls meditating and only seeing family during that time.

“I am one Black woman — if it were another Black woman cast in the role, it would have been the same conversation, she would have got the same attacks, the same abuse,” she says. “I just have to remind myself that the conversation is happening and that I’m a part of something that will be very, very revolutionary.”

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"In every project I am part of, no matter the budget or genre, the Black experience that I’m presenting needs to be 100 per cent authentic." See a preview of our December issue cover story with @lashanalynch, via link in bio. 📷 Lashana wears @Simonerocha_ dress, @Maxmara heels and @Chanelofficial Fine Jewellery, photographed by @RichardPhibbs and styled by @LeithClark. Artwork by @rosannawebster. #HarpersBazaar #LashanaLynch #DecemberIssue

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"Now we’re in a time when artists have enough collective energy to evoke change. There’s real work to be done, there are frank conversations to be had." As she prepares to star in the 25th Bond film, @lashanalynch is on a mission to use her voice for good. Read our December-issue interview in full, via link in bio. 📷 Lashana wears jewellery by @chopard, @jessica_mccormack and @annoushkajewellery, and @armanibeauty make-up, photographed by @RichardPhibbs. #LashanaLynch #NoTimeToDie

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Lynch is committed to representing Black people onscreen in a real way, and feels she did so in No Time to Die. 

“A character that is too slick, a cast-iron figure? That’s completely against what I stand for,” she explains. “I didn’t want to waste an opportunity when it came to what Nomi might represent. I searched for at least one moment in the script where Black audience members would nod their heads, tutting at the reality but glad to see their real life represented. In every project I am part of, no matter the budget or genre, the Black experience that I’m presenting needs to be 100 percent authentic.”

As for taking on a role that has only been played by men in the past, Lynch adds, “I feel very grateful that I get to challenge those narratives. We’re moving away from toxic masculinity, and that’s happening because women are being open, demanding and vocal, and calling out misbehavior as soon as we see it.”

No Time to Die will be released on April 2, 2021. In the meantime, check out the action-packed trailer for the 25th Bond film.

'No Time to Die' Trailer No. 2

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