Question: Has Julian McMahon ever been in the running to be the next Bond? He's the only actor I can think of who'd be as perfect a fit for the role as Pierce Brosnan.

Answer: The legendary search for Scarlett O'Hara has nothing on the quest for Bond, James Bond. Julian McMahon, the charismatic, Australian-born star of TV's Nip/Tuck has been mentioned as a candidate for the role in the upcoming Casino Royale and, presumably, the next several entries in the 007 franchise. But as far as I can tell, just about every handsome, athletic English/New Zealand/Scottish/Welsh/Australian actor in the 30-40ish age range has been proposed for the part. The candidates have included Australians Hugh Jackman, Alex O'Lachlan and Eric Bana; Scotsman Gerard Butler; a wild cross section of Englishmen, including Clive Owen, Daniel Craig, Dominic West, Adrian Paul, Orlando Bloom, Jude Law, Hugh Grant, Paul Bettany, Rufus Sewell, Jeremy Northam, Colin Salmon, Jack Davenport, Gary Stretch, Matthew MacFadyen and James Purefoy; New Zealander Karl Urban; and Welshmen Ioan Gruffudd and Dougray Scott. Oh, and Croatian-born E.R. regular Goran Visnjic. There's also some kind of grassroots campaign on behalf of singer/theater actor Rikki Lee Travolta (John Travolta's nephew). Bana, Paul and Owen are definitely out of the running, and there have been reports that McMahon wants too much money, which he emphatically denies. Casino Royale is scheduled to start shooting in January 2006, so the time for dithering is coming to a close.

Addendum: On October 15, 2005, EON (the company that produces the Bond films) announced that Daniel Craig was the new 007, unleashing a tidal wave of outrage from fans who complained that he isn't tall enough, dark enough (he's a diuty blonde) or handsome enough to play James Bond.