The money woes and development hell cannot keep 007 down.

Earlier this month, James Bond got back on track when word hit that 'Bond 23' still had Sam Mendes gearing up to direct, and a not-so-far-off release date of Nov. 9, 2012. Since then, buzz has been on the rise, and just days after word hit that Judi Dench would be returning to the franchise, Deadline now reveals that Javier Bardem has been offered a starring role in the film last week. Not as Bond himself, of course. That honor still belongs to Daniel Craig, who's ready to tackle the shnazzy icon for the third time.

The offered role is being kept under wraps, but it's not too hard to guess.

As Deadline notes, traditionally the leading male name goes to the villain of the film, and Bardem is certainly a go-to choice for bad guy, following his chilling work in 'No Country for Old Men.' But it all depends on timing and the actor's inclination, especially when just about any tough or villainous role seems to pass by his eyes first.

Rumors bubbled up recently that he might play the God of War in the 'Clash of the Titans' sequel, and now his name is all over the rumors for Ron Howard's 'Dark Tower' adaptation. But there's no telling which he'll go with. Bardem recently turned down a villainous role in 'Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps,' for example.

So, which project should he choose? Is it time for Bond to face Bardem? Heck, could Bond even dream of besting Bardem? Offer up your thoughts in the comments below.
CATEGORIES Movies, Cinematical