The Villain: A Spanish legend and awards-hog, who can play both suave and sadistic, Biutiful and bug-ugly. No wonder he's confirmed Bond bosses want him as Bond 23's big bad.
Once he's read the script, we've got all our fingers crossed that he'll sign on the dotted line to appear. We'd prefer it if he signed the contract using a pen that doubles-up as a lightsaber or something.
Bond Backstory: Already in Felix Leiter's sights as a barbaric drug cartel boss, it turns out Bardem is really channelling funds to Quantum. But, in a third-act twist, it's revealed that Bardem is Quantum himself . Mental.
Bond Villain Quirk: A walking stick that's actually a cattle-prod.
But, every Bond baddie needs a few henchmen, so we've compiled a list of actors who could provide back-up to Bardem...
The Villain: Flinty German-Irish actor who wowed in Hunger , impressed in Inglourious Basterds and is about to bust blocks as Magneto in X-Men: First Class .
Bond Backstory: Sandhurst-educated soldier/spy who has renounced Queen and country, nabbed a fitsful of MI6 secrets and scarpered to run Quantum's terror wing.
Bond Villain Quirk: A glass eye on which he notches up the number of 00-agents he has killed.
The Villain: Chameoleonic Brit who pioneered mo-cap acting in The Lord of the Rings and King Kong before becoming an unlikely leading man - speciality: real-life Ians (Brady and Dury).
Bond Backstory: Physicist in charge of a Large Hadron Collider-style project who has been driven insane and wants to turn the machine into a matter bomb.
Bond Villain Quirk: Translucent skin caused by prolonged exposure to the particles.
The Villain: French firebomb whose gruelling Gallic thuggery has lit up the screen since La Haine . Currently dazzing mainstream audiences as a barking-mad ballet impressario in Black Swan .
Bond Backstory: A schizophrenic European Baron, a cultured and debonair criminal mastermind... when he's not smashing in people's faces in spontaneous temper-tantrums.
Bond Villain Quirk: Reversible black-and-white leather gloves, which he switches to suit his mood.
The Villain: Ben's younger bro has eclipsed his more famous sibling as an actor, channelling his apparent weediness into dead-eyed menace in The Assassination of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford and The Killer Inside Me .
Bond Backstory: Texan oil tycoon fomenting racial tension in order to provoke his State to secede from the Union with him as its leader.
Bond Villain Quirk: A pet alligator.
The Villain: The original Girl With The Dragon Tattoo , who has already been fast-tracked to the A-list courtesy of Sherlock Holmes 2 and Ridley Scott's is-it-isn't-it Alien prequel, Prometheus .
Bond Backstory: Ernst Stavro Blofeld's daughter, raised on SPECTRE's values and determined to show the Quantum upstarts how true global villainy works.
Bond Villain Quirk: Like daddy, she's totally bald.
The Villain: Breakout star of A Prophet , soon to appear in Kevin Macdonald's The Eagle .
Bond Backstory : Biochemist poisoned by his own addictive drug, which he now intends to pollute the world with.
Bond Villain Quirk: He carries a drip around with him so he can always be high.
The Villain: Irish legend whose participation in a movie is guaranteed to raise its excellence, whether big ( Harry Potter 's Mad-Eye Moody) or small ( In Bruges ).
Bond Backstory: Ex-IRA footsoldier turned respectable politician. In reality, Quantum's strategist-in-chief who is still applying guerilla warfare on the world stage.
Bond Villain Quirk: He wears earmuffs - green, of course - because the sound of gunfire gives him flashbacks.
The Villain: Versatile English actor equally at home with Kinky Boots ' crowd-pleasing comedy as Children of Men 's bleak sci-fi. Faultless American accent means he's a fave for everyone from Spike Lee to Woody Allen.
Bond Backstory: Charismatic fundamentalist preacher who has turned his brethren into kick-ass warriors, in order to topple the American Government.
Bond Villain Quirk: A crucifix with daggers that come out of every side.
The Villain: Rugged Danish-American who rose from man-glam supporting roles to Cronenberg's philosophical psycho of choice, via the epic role of The Lord of The Rings ' Aragorn.
Bond Backstory: A Russian oligarch and football fanatic who has built a state-of-the-art lair, complete with nuclear missile launchpad, under the pitch.
Bond Villain Quirk: Poison-dart vuvuzela
The Villain: Down-to-earth bloke with the darkest of dark sides: see Dead Man's Shoes , My Summer of Love , etc. Also a Bourne veteran, albeit cast against type as a Guardian journalist.
Bond Backstory: Sociopathic braniac who has invented a super-laser and wants revenge on the Establishment who tried to stymie his work.
Bond Villain Quirk: He whistles the Tetris theme while he's kicking people's heads in.
The Villain: Veteran Spaniard best-known for his sadistic fascist in Pan's Labyrinth and his amoral people-trafficker in Dirty Pretty Things .
Bond Backstory: A classical musician who went mad after a 00-agent actually shot off his hand during a shoot-out, and now vows personal vengeance against the British.
Bond Villain Quirk: He still plays the violin, with a metal bow he had surgically attached instead of a hand.
The Villain: The indie purist's choice of star - Half Nelson , Blue Valentine - who swore he'd never do a major Hollywood blockbuster. But the Bond films are sort of British, so surely that counts as indie, eh, Ryan?
Bond Backstory: Militant eco-warrior so sickened by mankind's lack of respect for the Earth that he decides to pull the plug for good by blowing up the polar ice caps.
Bond Villain Quirk: He's built an undersea zoo to save the animals.
The Villain: Rising Venezuelan star who went head-to-head with Matt Damon in The Bourne Ultimatum before anchoring all five hours of Carlos with strutting confidence.
Bond Backstory: A ex-Quantum henchman who has stolen valuable secrets and gone rogue to head up his own, even more dastardly off-shoot.
Bond Villain Quirk: He uses only diamond bullets.
The Villain: Acclaimed Aussie actor - yes, he was in Baz Luhrmann's Australia - about to become one of 2011's hottest breakout stars thanks to cops 'n' crims thriller Animal Kingdom .
Bond Backstory: A skewed take on Wikileaks - a global whistleblower intent on provoking World War Three via leaked documents.
Bond Villain Quirk: He buries his enemies alive with all of the files he's kept on their dodgy dealings.
The Villain: Veteran character actor and one-time Dracula who has entered a late period of stardom thanks to the creepy-crawly duo of The Box and Frost/Nixon .
Bond Backstory: Exiled dictator whose controversial arrival in London, using diplomatic immunity, is a pretext for blowing up Parliament.
Bond Villain Quirk: His henchman wears a spiked gimp suit.
The Villain: Aussie with leftfield tastes - Mulholland Dr. , 21 Grams - but not averse to blockbusters if the project is right ( King Kong ). Too sharp to be wasted as a Bond girl.
Bond Backstory: Folksy populist politician whose ditzy, gaffe-strewn exterior hides a ruthless agenda to stem the tide of progress by provoking global war against America.
Bond Villain Quirk: Warpaint.
The Villain: Argentinian star of Nine Queens and The Secret In Their Eyes , who is frankly long overdue a Bardem-style crossover to English language movies.
Bond Backstory: A crooked lawyer who gets dangerous killers acquitted on false evidence and then forces them to work for him.
Bond Villain Quirk: He suffocates witnesses using his lawyer's wig.
The Villain: An indie sensation in Dead Man's Shoes and Control , before Rockunrolla' s swaggering Britpop star got him noticed by Hollywood for sidekick duties in Prince of Persia .
Bond Backstory: A Derren Brown-style illusionist sending coded messages via his Twitter feed to turn the world's population into anarchists.
Bond Villain Quirk: He's painfully weak as a result of persuading everybody else to do his bidding.
The Villain: Vincent Cassel's La Haine co-star is Hollywood's go-to guy for nuanced Arabic villainy ( Three Kings , Vantage Point ) but has never had a true leading role.
Bond Backstory: A Middle East terrorist whose bombing campaign inadvertently thwarts Quantum's own plans, making him a target for 007 and Quantum.
Bond Villain Quirk: Mini-bombs disguised as candy.
The Villain: Intense Irish actor who paid the inevitable IRA dues in The Wind That Shakes The Barley but now specialises in playing weirdoes for Christopher Nolan in Batman Begins and Inception .
Bond Backstory: Orphaned by the Troubles, Cillian's hair-trigger temper has turned him into a survivalist assassin who specialises in offing the Queen's licensed killers.
Bond Villain Quirk: Razor-wire rosary beads.
The Villain: Veteran character actress who paid her dues on Homicide: Life On The Street , before finding fame in middle-age in Frozen River and her current Oscar-nominated turn in The Fighter .
Bond Backstory: Cruel dominatrix with an army of ninja slaves who do her every bidding.
Bond Villain Quirk: She performs karaoke while having her victims killed.
The Villain: French-based, Israeli-born actor who appeared in Munich and Rush Hour 3, was Cesar-nominated for Rapt , but is better known in France for being Tom Cruise's dub voice.
Bond Backstory: A banker who tries to bring down the world's stock markets by assassinating the heads of high-profile businesses.
Bond Villain Quirk: Abacus nunchucks.