James Bond might be getting a more age-appropriate love interest, if some rumors out ofthe United Kingdom are correct. Yahoo UK reports that Penelope Cruz is close to inking a deal to star in "Bond 24," the next, still-untitled installment of the venerable action series.

Yahoo UK quotes an unnamed source close to the production as saying that Cruz has been on Bond producers' radar for some time as a possible love interest for the current Bond, 45-year-old Daniel Craig, but that previous commitments prevented her from taking a role in the franchise. Discussions to seal a deal with the actress have been ongoing for some time but are now close to completion, the source said.

"She'll be a great Bond girl. Bond girls are always brainy as well as sexy, and that's totally Penelope," the source added.

Cruz, who is set to turn 40 next year, would be the oldest Bond Girl ever if she joined the franchise, besting 39-year-old Honor Blackman's turn as Pussy Galore in 1962's "Goldfinger." We can only hope that if the rumors are true, Cruz is bestowed with an equally-awesome moniker.

She certainly has an in with the franchise: her husband, Javier Bardem, played the villain in the last Bond outing, "Skyfall." And despite the hullabaloo about her age, we think Cruz would make a great counterpart for Craig regardless of that detail.

Still, "Bond 24" isn't slated to come out until at least 2015 -- "Skyfall" director Sam Mendes, who previously declined to direct the follow-up, is now mulling returning for the next two features, pending other commitments -- so we'll take this news with a grain of salt until Cruz confirms it herself.

[via Yahoo Movies UK h/t Slash Film]

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