No Time To Die star Lashana Lynch has credited Phoebe Waller-Bridge for enhancing her character’s “black feminine energy” as a writer.
The 33-year-old becomes the latest Bond girl in the new movie, playing Nomi, the secret agent given the 007 title while Daniel Craig’s leading man is in exile.
Lashana is the first Black female to take on the 007 title within the franchise, and in the process of writing the film, Fleabag creator Phoebe worked with Lashana to shape Nomi into something unique.
“[Phoebe] brought a lightness of touch that really matched Black feminine energy. And I don’t quite know how she did that,” she told Net-A-Porter’s digital title, Porter .
“When I read lines that were clearly from her, it all just made sense to the kind of upbringing that I imagined Nomi would have.”
After landing the role, the Bulletproof actress told her mum who said she “always believed” Lashana would be a trailblazer in the series.
She explained: “The howling that released from my mum’s mouth was like something I’ve never heard before.
“Like the biggest ‘Jesus!’ [She] screamed at the top of her lungs, but she also said, ‘I knew it’ and I said, ‘so did I’.”
In previous interviews, Lashana revealed that she had meetings with Phoebe in order to shape the character of Nomi. In these chats, they discussed who they wanted Nomi to be, and how to write her.
Phoebe was initially brought onto the project to bring a ‘fresh female perspective’ into the heavily masculine franchise – and Lashana already had ideas on what she wanted Nomi’s motivations to be.
“A character that is too slick, a cast-iron figure? That’s completely against what I stand for,” she told Harper’s Bazaar in September.
“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 per cent authentic.”
No Time To Die was Daniel Craig’s final outing as James Bond after 15 years in the role.
Read the full interview with Lashana Lynch on Porter and/or download the Net-A-Porter app.
James Bond: No Time To Die is in cinemas now.