James Bond Cast Announcement

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Daniel Craig is back!

The 46-year-old actor will reprise his role as James Bond in Spectre, director Sam Mendes announced during a press conference Thursday morning at Pinewood Studios in the U.K. Actors Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris, Rory Kinnear and Ben Whishaw will all return in roles introduced in 2012's Skyfall. Newcomers include Dave Bautista, Monica Bellucci, Andrew Scott, Léa Seydoux and Christoph Waltz.

Craig first played 007 in 2006's Casino Royale, then in 2008's Quantum of Solace and 2012's Skyfall.

Skyfall writers John Logan, Neil Purvis and Rob Wade are also returning.

Scott will play MI5 employee Denbigh, while Bautista will play a henchman called Mr. Hinx. The sexy Bellucci and Seydoux are the new Bond girls, named Lucia Sciarra and Madeleine Swann, respectively. Waltz will play Oberhauser—a character who, coincidentally or not, shares the name of Bond's former ski instructor. It has been rumored that Waltz will really play Bond's old nemesis, Ernst Stavro Blofeld.

Spectre—an acronym for Special Executive for Counter-intelligence, Terrorism, Revenge and Extortion—was the name of the international crime syndicate, whose 'Number One' was Blofeld himself.

Bond will drive an Aston Martin DB10, which was also unveiled at the press conference.

Spectre will shoot across the globe in locations such as the Austrian Alps, London, Mexico City and Morocco. Principal photography is scheduled to begin on Monday.

Expectations are high for Spectre, as Skyfall was a surprise hit. After its release, it became the seventh-biggest movie of all time with $1.1 billion in earnings, the second-biggest film of 2012 behind The Avengers and the highest-grossing film in U.K. box office history. It won two Oscars and two Grammys.

Adele performed the Skyfall theme, though it's yet to be revealed who will sing Spectre's main song.

The 24th James Bond movie will be released in the U.K. on Oct. 23 and on Nov. 6 in the U.S.

PHOTOS: Bond babes

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