Never say never again. According to Deadline.com, Sam Mendes has begun negotiations with MGM and Sony to direct the next James Bond film. Mendes, who shepherded “Skyfall” to $1 billion in worldwide grosses, had previously said he would not direct another 007 movie at this time.
“It has been a very difficult decision not to accept [Bond producers] Michael Wilson and Barbara Broccoli’s very generous offer to direct the next Bond movie,” Mendes said to Empire Magazine back in March. “Directing ‘Skyfall’ was one of the best experiences of my professional life, but I have theatre and other commitments, including productions of ‘Charlie And The Chocolate Factory’ and ‘King Lear,’ that need my complete focus over the next year and beyond.”
Later, in an interview with The Guardian this past April, Mendes elaborated on why he passed on Bond 24. “Was I willing to go straight back into a room with a writer and start work on the same set of characters and the same scenarios as I’ve been working on for the last three years? No. The idea made me feel physically ill,” Mendes said.
Many names have been rumored to replace Mendes, including Christopher Nolan; the acclaimed director reportedly met with Wilson and Broccoli to discuss Bond 24. Other directors floated as possibilities included Nicolas Winding Refn, Shane Black, Ang Lee, David Yates and Tom Hooper.
As for Mendes, it seems that his possible “Skyfall” encore has been in the works for quite a while. Online Hollywood trade TheWrap noted that Mendes’ publicist denied the director’s Bond involvement on at least two occasions over the last month. The director is finishing up his run of “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” and apparently keen to go back in a room with a writer and the same set of characters once again.
For more on Mendes’ possible Bond return, head over to Deadline.com.
by Christopher Rosen