Naomie Harris has been a key part of James Bond’s evolution.
The “No Time to Die” star is on the new cover of Tatler and in the issue she talks about the more female-driven new entry in the franchise, and her role as Moneypenny.
“It’s a difficult tightrope to walk. You have to honour the Bond of old. If you modernize too quickly, you lose what makes Bond Bond,” she says. “And part of what makes Bond what it is is that foot in the past. It has that traditional aspect to it. You have to honour that, I think. But then, as well, you have to move with the times.”
Harris also talks about the response she got after opening up about her experience of being groped by another actor during an audition in her 20s.
“I’ve just had an outpouring of women saying, ‘Me too’, basically,” she says. “There have been some catty things from a few people. ‘Why didn’t you say that before? Why didn’t you speak out earlier?’ As though there’s a time limit on these things. On the whole, people have been incredibly supportive. And I don’t feel that, in terms of my career, there have been any repercussions at all.’”
The lockdown has also forced Harris so ask herself some difficult questions about who she is if she’s not acting, and what actually makes her happy.
Asked if she’s found answer to those questions, she admits, “I’m not sure yet. What I do know is, I’m grateful I had this opportunity to reassess my life. I realized that so much of my identity and my life is tied into work. And that there are huge areas outside of that that are so underdeveloped and under-explored.”
Harris adds, “Y’know, I used to constantly think, ‘Oh, when I achieve this, when I achieve that, then I can relax a bit more, then I can be a bit more at peace, then all will be well in my world.’ And actually, thinking back, the moments of greatest peace during this have been with my family.”
See the full feature in the December issue of Tatler available via digital download and newsstands on Tuesday, Nov. 3.