Sources say franchise producer Barbara Broccoli is eyeing the Bodyguard star and an offer is imminent.
"It's seriously looking like he [Madden] is going to get the job," the source said. "Not only is he on top of Barbara's list, but she is preparing to offer the role."
The 32-year-old Madden would take over from 50-year-old Daniel Craig, who headlines his fifth 007 movie with the upcoming Bond 25. Craig intends to make the milestone film his last outing as the character despite a report that surfaced last summer claiming Craig would return for two more films.
Appearing on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert in 2017, Craig said of Bond 25, "I think this is it. I just want to go out on a high note. I can't wait."
Other actors whose names have been floated, to varying degrees, include Idris Elba, Tom Hardy, and Henry Cavill, who was the latest to be rumored for the role following reports he was exiting his role as Superman in Warner Bros.' DC Films universe.
The Mission: Impossible — Fallout star once expressed his interest in the role when talking to Yahoo Movies, saying he would accept an offer to play the next James Bond if approached.
"I think Bond would be a really fun role," Cavill said. "It's British, it's cool. I think now that I have my Mission: Impossible badge we can do real stunts and really amp it up as well."2comments
He added: "Not to say they weren't doing real stunts — I'm just saying it would be fun for me to actually take what I've learnt on this and carry it through to a movie like Bond. I'd love to play a Brit — I don't get to play a Brit very often. So yes, I would love the opportunity and if they were to ask, I would say yes."
Following the exit of original director Danny Boyle, Bond 25 most recently tapped Cary Joji Fukunaga (True Detective, Maniac) to direct. That film shifted from its planned November 2019 release to a new date of February 14, 2020.