^ Oh, you're absolutely right about the other factors. I remember around 2004 all sorts of rumours about where the franchise was going and who was to take over - names like Eric Bana, Julian McMahon, Heath Ledger, Orlando Bloom, Owen and others being in the mix. There was talk of a 'one-off' big name actor to make one movie while they looked for a longer-term replacement for Brosnan.
I used to be in the pro-Owen camp but I now think that his mumbling, slightly off-beat persona wouldn't be suitable. He's better in the likes of Children of Men or Croupier as a reluctant hero than he is as an action hero in the likes of King Arthur.