She’s known for playing Mary Goodnight in the 007 classic The Man With The Golden Gun alongside Roger Moore.
The 78-year-old Swedish actress said: ‘Bond is a bachelor and will always be a bachelor. Do you know what the female word for bachelor is? Old maid.’
‘Do you know what the female word for bachelor is? Old maid’: Britt Ekland claimed on Wednesday that the new James Bond could never be a woman because the spy is single
However, Britt revealed that attending the No Time To Die premiere on Tuesday night had changed her perspective on the franchise’s female characters slightly.
The actress joined a growing number of Bond fans who have decided to swap the term Bond girls for Bond women.
She said: ‘I have always maintained that it has to be a Bond girl but I’ve changed my mind. Last night, the Bond women were just that and they were incredible.
‘They were quick, fast, great actresses. Very physical. They never showed their bodies and they were just great Bond women.’
Former Bond girl: The Swedish actress is known for playing Mary Goodnight in the 007 classic The Man With The Golden Gun (pictured in 1974)
Yet, Britt maintained that the titular character could never be played by a woman as it wouldn’t be true to the author of the spy series Ian Fleming’s creation.
She said in an empassioned speech: ‘It’s written as a man. It’s a British male institituion. We can’t change that.
‘We don’t need to change that. There are plenty of roles for women have to be physical but Bond has to be Bond.’
Shift: Britt revealed No Time To Die had changed her perspective on the franchise’s female characters who were now ‘fast’ and ‘very physical’ (pictured at the premier)
Archaic? The actress said she would now call the 007 female characters ‘Bond women’ rather than ‘Bond girls’ due to their new found agency (pictured in The Man With The Golden Gun)
When asked what she thought of Daniel Craig’s performance in No Time To Die, Britt quipped: ‘He’s finally loosened up. He was humourous. There were quick one-liners. He was cheeky… very desirable.’
However, the actress stayed loyal to Roger Moore’s depiction of 007 as she gushed about her co-star and described the silver screen legend as her favourite Bond.
She said: He was what Fleming wrote. He was sophisticated, suave, tall, a bachelor… With Roger, all my life from 1974 until he passed we were always friends. He never changed.’
‘He’s finally loosened up’: Britt added that she thought Daniel Craig’s performance in No Time To Die was ‘humourous’ ‘cheeky’ and ‘very desirable’
Loyal: But the actress said that Roger Moore was still her favourite Bond because her co-star was ‘sophisticated, suave, tall, a bachelor’ and exactly ‘what Fleming wrote’
It comes after Bond producer Barbara Broccoli also said she believes 007 will always be a male character earlier this week.
The head of Eon Productions, who signs off on every key hiring and firing in the franchise, said she will be discussing who will take over the role from Daniel Craig next year – and that it will be a man.
She told the PA news agency: ‘James Bond is a male character. I hope that there will be many, many films made with women, for women, by women, about women.
‘James Bond is a male character!’ It comes after Bond producer Barbara Broccoli has said she believes 007 will always be a male character
‘I don’t think we have to take a male character and have a woman portray him. So yes, I see him as male.’
She also admitted she hasn’t faced the fact that current Bond Craig – who will not play the part any longer, following the latest film No Time To Die – is stepping down.
‘I’m sort of in denial, I would love for Daniel to continue forever,’ she went on. ‘So I’m not thinking about [his replacement]. That’s something Michael [G Wilson, her half-brother and fellow producer] and I will discuss next year.’
Asked if conversations about Craig’s successor are imminent, she replied: ‘No. We want to celebrate the fantastic tenure of Daniel Craig, who’s given everything to this character into this franchise for 15 years and it is really time to celebrate him.’
Stepping down: The head of Eon Productions, who signs off on every key hiring and firing in the franchise, said she will be discussing who will take over the role from Daniel Craig next year – and that it will be a man [pictured in 2006’s Casino Royale]