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Given the record-shattering success of Skyfall, it only makes sense that 007 producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson would lock up the movie’s director – Sam Mendes – for the next installment, at the very least. Thankfully, it now sounds like we’re one step closer to that becoming a reality.
Sources are telling the UK Daily Mail that Mendes is “75 percent” committed to directing Bond 24, which no longer will be the first half of a two-part story, as once was rumored. Screenwriter John Logan reportedly continues to hammer away at the script for the next 007 thriller, which will return Daniel Craig to the lead role, surrounded by expected franchise players Ralph Fiennes (as the new M), Naomie Harris (as the new Moneypenny), and Ben Whishaw (as the new Q).
Perhaps telling Mendes that he wouldn’t have to commit to two films helped lure him back into the Bond fold? That would be a lot of time to dedicate to a franchise, and Mendes doesn’t work at a rapid pace (having directed only six features since bursting on the scene with the Oscar-winning American Beauty in 1999).
Retaining Mendes would be a huge shot in the arm for Craig and the Bond series, which suffered a drastic misstep when Marc Forster was hired for Quantum of Solace despite the fact that he couldn’t helm a credible action sequence. Mendes handled the action in Skyfall beautifully, and also brought top craftsmen (like cinematographer Roger Deakins) to help coax the best out of Team Bond. Bringing him back for the next Bond is a no-brainer. Let’s just hope Mendes signs on the dotted line so work on the next Bond – due in theaters in 2014 – officially can begin.