Bond writer makes sexist “joke” about Phoebe Waller-Bridge

The 'Fleabag' creator worked on 'No Time To Die'

A writer who worked with Phoebe Waller-Bridge on the upcoming Bond movie No Time To Die has made a sexist “joke” about her.

The Fleabag creator was brought on board the next instalment in the long-running franchise to polish the script and offer alternative routes in the storyline.

Speaking on the James Bond Radio podcast, Robert Wade said: “It’s like a relay race. Phoebe did the bit where you get the prize at the end. For a woman, she is very witty.” When the podcast’s host responded negatively to his comment, Wade replied: “It’s a joke.”

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The writer, who, alongside Neal Purvis, co-wrote the likes of Spectre, Casino Royale, and The World Is Not Enough, said that he hadn’t taken the move to bring Waller-Bridge on board personally, although he had been “confused” by the producers’ decision.

“We went to New York to talk to Daniel [Craig] and he was on board for doing something kind of different,” he said. “We spent a lot of time thrashing it out. It was slightly ­experimental and it felt like that’s what we needed to do. I’m not sure we fully pulled it off. But there was a certain amount of ­nervousness about it.”

He also discussed the long-running debate about whether the series is misogynistic. Wade said the comments had “never worried him”.

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“There haven’t been many women involved [before] and, obviously, it’s a good thing for women to be involved.”

No Time To Die was scheduled for release in April but has now been pushed back to November as the numbers of coronavirus cases rise worldwide.

The film will be Daniel Craig’s last appearance as the British secret agent. Speaking to GQ, the actor said he felt “physically low” after completing filming on Spectre and almost said no to doing another Bond film entirely.

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