AN actor who played James Bond himself has commended Somerset's Aaron Taylor-Johnson amidst heavy speculation he could be the next 007.

George Lazenby, who played Bond in Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969), told TMZ he believed Taylor-Johnson, who looks most likely to take on the role, 'can handle the stunts, and all the ladies who love a man in a tux.'

Lazenby explained that to his knowledge, Aaron Taylor Johnson, who lives in Bruton, has not yet been officially offered the role.

He continued by saying he would be happy to back the Somerset actor, provided he could 'do the character justice.'

Last week, Sir Jonathan Pryce, 76, who played the title character in the BBC drama Sherlock Holmes And The Baker Street Irregulars opposite Aaron Taylor-Johnson, also tipped the Somerset actor as a good fit for the next 007.

Pryce, who played James Bond villain Elliot Carver in the film Tomorrow Never Dies, commended Taylor-Johnson, and told ITV’s Good Morning Britain that he worked with the English actor, 33, who starred in Nowhere Boy, when he was a teenager and has watched him develop as an actor.

“It’s interesting to bring talk about Bond because even at that age, he was quite the ladies’ man," Sir Johnathan said.

“He’s grown into a wonderful actor, and when he was a little younger, he did this extraordinary sort of action film (Kick-Ass) where he played a superhero.

“And he’s great, look at him now, he’s black tie, handsome and yeah, he’d be a great Bond.”