Phoebe Waller-Bridge slams suggestion she was hired for Bond film because of her gender

Daniel Craig previously denied Phoebe Waller-Bridge was a diversity hire.

Phoebe Waller-Bridge has slammed reports suggesting she was hired to help write the female characters in upcoming James Bond film No Time to Die.

The Fleabag creator/actress was drafted in to finesse the script written by director Cary Joji Fukunaga and screenwriter Scott Z. Burns - which was an update of an earlier draft written by Bond veterans Neal Purvis and Robert Wade.

It was subsequently suggested Phoebe had been brought on as a diversity hire and to help write the female characters, and the British actress has now insisted that her gender had nothing to do with landing the job.

The 34-year-old recalled during a recent interview with comedian Deborah Frances-White at the Southbank Centre in London that she was approached by the film's star, Daniel Craig, and producer Barbara Broccoli.

"The reality was I got a call from Barbara and Daniel saying, 'We like your work, can you come in and help us?' There wasn't ever really a conversation about can you come in and help us with 'the ladies'," she shared, according to theguardian.com.

"They are proper, amazing producers and writers and actors and suddenly they are reduced to those people?" Phoebe fired. "The characters were there, the story was there, it was just really exciting to be a part of it. There was a bunch of writers, I was a small contribution to this thing."

Daniel previously denied the suggestion Phoebe was a diversity hire, calling the claim "f**king ridiculous" and adding to Britain's Sunday Times, "She's a great writer. Why shouldn't we get Phoebe onto Bond?"

Phoebe will be the second woman to be credited as a writer in the Bond franchise after Johanna Harwood, who worked on Dr No and From Russia With Love in the early 1960s.

No Time to Die, which features female characters played by Lea Seydoux, Ana de Armas, and Lashana Lynch, hits cinemas in April.

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