‘Sherlock’ star Benedict Cumberbatch to play Bond villain?

He could square up to Daniel Craig in the 24th 007 movie, due in 2014

Benedict Cumberbatch is reportedly being lined up to play the next Bond villain.

According to The Express, the Sherlock actor could square up to Daniel Craig in the 24th Bond movie, which is expected to come out in 2014.

A source apparently told the tabloid: “Benedict is considered perfect Bond villain material. Work on the next film will begin next year and the plan is for Benedict to be on board. He grew up watching Bond, so it would be a childhood ambition fulfilled. Playing a Bond villain is one of the plum roles in film history and he’d jump at the chance.”

Cumberbatch, 36, has been increasingly in demand since Sherlock became a big international hit. He is already set to play the villain in the new Star Trek movie, due next year, and also has a role in Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit trilogy.

At the end of August (2012), he was cast alongside Meryl Streep in August Osage County, a Hollywood adaptation of an award-winning stage play. He has also found time to film a cameo in The Simpsons.

Meanwhile, the 23rd Bond movie, Skyfall, is scheduled for release on October 26 – you can watch the trailer by scrolling down to the bottom. Facing Daniel Craig’s 007 will be Raoul Silva, a mysterious villain played by Spanish actor Javier Bardem. The ensemble cast also includes Judi Dench, Ben Whishaw and Naomie Harris, while Adele has been confirmed to sing the theme tune.