15 Female Athletes Who Could Play Opposite James Bond in Skyfall
Daniel Craig returns as Agent 007 in the 23rd installment of the James Bond series on Friday, much to the delight of myself and millions of fans across the globe.
And what better way to celebrate the return of one of cinema's greatest action heroes by discussing, well, his leading women.
Yes, gorgeous women (thank you, Eva Green) who have been as important to the plot lines and stories as the men who have played the title role and their famous villains.
What if Bond's women were professional athletes and a little more involved in the story than just words and sex appeal? In my opinion there is nothing wrong with that. The movie would be a little more interesting, that is for sure.
Here is a look at some female athletes around the globe who would make awesome heroines.
15. Alina Kabaeva
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Although retired since 2007, this rhythmic gymnast knows a thing or two about athletics and politics.
Kabaeva is a Russian Honored Master of Sports, retired rhythmic gymnast, and politician. Since 2007, she has been a State Duma deputy from the United Russia party.
Not bad and perfect for a role in a Bond movie.
Kabaeva started her training and dancing when she was 3. Her success did not fall from the tree as her father was a professional soccer player.
Seems like even for her size, 5'4" and 110 pounds, she could handle herself on the screen and in action.
14. Chanelle Sladics
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Every now and then, it is good to bring in a professional snowboarder to help you with your get away or reaching you destination.
Since we never know where the adventures of James Bond will take us, it is important to be prepared (somehow I do not think James Bond was a Boy Scout).
Sladics makes her home in California and has been in the sand, surf and snow most of her life. She won a Bronze medal in the 2007 X Games as well.
Don't let her size fool you. At 5'4" and 115 pounds, she is kick ass and quick as a cat.
13. Ronda Rousey
She could be the next big thing in MMA. Rousey, with the award-winning smile and tenaciousness you look for in an athlete in this sport, is a perfect fit to play opposite Mr. Bond.
Rousey's athletic background can be traced back to her mother. Rousey's mother, Ann Maria Rousey DeMars also had a decorated Judo career and was the first American to win a World Judo Championship in 1984.
If she had educated feet and can make a few guys timid about being around her in the line of battle, all the more reason for her to be part of the James Bond brand.
12. Ana Ivanovic
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Serbian, brunette and oh so sexy. And not a bad backhand shot to boot.
This former No. 1 tennis player in the world knows a thing or two about long, intense battles. She is also knowledgeable in other areas of interest, like her studies in finance at the University of Belgrade.
If Bond is looking for the girl-next-door with a flair for a winning edge, he should look no further than right here.
11. Malia Jones
Image via @MaliaJones
This exotic model and surfer is one of the best in the world. Her love of water is a little different than all the other potential Bond Girls on this list.
Her beauty comes from the fact that Jones is of Hawaiian, Spanish-Filipino, German and English descent and started out on the boards when she was in her early teens.
She won the girls division of the United States Amateur Surfing Championship at the age of 15.
While she is a favorite of print magazines for her beauty, it takes a person with few fears in life to tackle the waves in Australia, Hawaii, and across the Atlantic and Pacific oceans.
She is tough as nails and would be a great compliment to Mr. Bond.
10. Arianny Celeste
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Just saying her name is sexy. She is added because not only is she a UFC ring girl and has appeared in Playboy, she is also quite the athlete herself.
And James Bond is a sucker for hot brunettes.
Being around UFC fighters on a daily basis, Celeste too is involved in kickboxing and fitness training.
And with a body and smile like that, she could easily be a distraction not only for her hero, but also the villain they are trying to get rid of.
9. Dara Torres
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For the past twenty years, I have been a huge fan of this former Florida Gator. Don't tell any of my FSU alums.
Torres is one of the most beautiful athletes to grace any sports medium. In the pool, she could arguably be named the greatest American female swimmer of all time.
While she looks demure and resembles the soccer mom you know in the neighborhood, she is a true champion and athlete who, at 45, still attempted to make the 2012 London games for Team USA.
Torres is a twelve-time Olympic medalist. Torres is the first and only swimmer from the United States to compete in five Olympic Games (1984, 1988, 1992, 2000 and 2008), and, at age 41, is the oldest swimmer ever to earn a place on the U.S. Olympic team.
Those are accolades even James Bond can't compete with.
8. Lolo Jones
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She is quick as a cat. We all know her back story of overcoming hardships as a youngster and lifting herself from a life on the streets to starring as one of the darlings at the recent London Olympics.
And now, it looks like she will change her stripes and compete in the 2014 bobsled event. Is there anything this woman can't do?
Starring in a movie might be the next big thing for this media diva who seems to still captivate people wherever she goes.
7. Ashley Force
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Her daddy instilled the love of speed in her. Thank goodness she does not look her father.
Ashley is not only a great driver and has great command of the road when she is competing in NHRA events, she is not bad to look at either.
Actually, she is gorgeous, with that girl-next-door smile and those eyes that captivate you.
There is a lot of speed in Bond movies. Maybe Force could teach James a thing or two about acceleration.
6. Gina Carano
Is there any woman in the world you think is absolutely gorgeous and yet you know she can kick your butt with ease?
Meet Gina Carano, television personality, fitness model and a former mixed martial artist. Carano was also on American Gladiators as Crush.
Carano certainly knows her way around a ring and the screen at the same time and will appear in The Fast & The Furious 6 with fellow ring veteran Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson.
If she can handle the testosterone-filled ego of the part-time wrestler, then she can certainly handle herself around the calmer and sometimes more violent 007.
5. Anna Kournikova
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She couldn't play a lick of tennis, but she had most of us men tuned in just to see that face and that body.
Anna Kournikova is living proof that sex sells.
This Russian beauty is now retired from the courts and has been working on other endeavors, but has remained out of the press for a while. And we all know she loves the camera. Playing a Bond Girl would be ideal for her with that beautiful smile and sultry look.
She is also known for having a temper, which is something new that we haven't seen from one of Bond's women.
4. Gail Kim
Wrestlers are athletes, too. None may be more beautiful than the lovely Gail Kim of TNA Wrestling.
Kim, who has been a fixture both in the WWE and TNA, knows a thing or two about locking it up both in and out of the ring. She is also a celebrity outside the squared circle as she is married to "Restaurant Impossible" star Robert Irvine.
Irvine is a large athletic specimen himself and looks like he could handle a few rounds in a battle with Bond.
But when it comes to beauty and brawn, Kim may have all these athletes on this list beat.
3. Michelle Wie
Look, she is all grown up.
Tall, slender and oh so beautiful. She did not set the LPGA Tour on fire like she and the golf world had hoped, but Wie is certainly Bond material.
The best things Wie has going for her are her youth, her height and the fact that she can swing a stick faster than most in the world—which would be good in times of trouble.
And how many times have you seen a stunning Asian woman who is six feet tall staring you in the face?
Kind of takes your breath away, doesn't it?
2. Leryn Franco
Who knew the javelin could be such a sexy piece of athletic equipment?
With Leryn Franco holding onto it, I assume she can make just about anything look as a sexy as she wants it to be.
This Paraguayan beauty, who reminds me a bit of Penelope Cruz (who ironically is married to Javier Bardem, the villain in this Bond movie), is also a model and was a participant in the 2012 London games.
She certainly looks the part and could be a mainstay in Bond movies for years to come.
1. Maria Sharapova
The blond Russian import could very well be the most beautiful woman ever to play sports.
As a tennis player, she is as crafty as any we have seen. She swings a racket like she is out to hurt someone. In commercials and media marketing, she is an advertising dream.
On the celebrity circuit and the red carpet she draws cameras and interviews like Hollywood royalty.
And on the big screen, she could very well be as successful as she has been on the tennis court.
How could you concentrate on James Bond when you have those eyes starring right back at you?