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James Bond on Pause: Sony Ready to Hold 'Skyfall' Sequel Until Sam Mendes Is Free to Direct

Well, well, well, it looks like Sam Mendes won't be leaving the James Bond family after all. Back in March, Mendes shocked a lot of people when he announced that he was passing on the opportunity to direct the sequel to Skyfall. Skyfall grossed over $1 billion worldwide and became the franchise's biggest hit ever (even winning a few Oscars too), which made Sony very eager to work with Mendes again.

After Mendes departed, the studio began the slow search for another director. The Bond films have only been directed by British or Australian directors, so it was no surprise when word leaked that Sony was testing the Christopher Nolan waters. The Dark Knight trilogy director is busy with Interstellar, his next original project though, so while Nolan has long expressed the desire to direct a Bond film, the timing of the Skyfall sequel wasn't right. Early Tuesday, Variety reported that Sony was looking at Drive's Nicholas Winding Refn, Life of Pi's Ang Lee, Iron Man 3's Shane Black, The King's Speech's Tom Hooper and the Harry Potter series' David Yates. While a few of those guys are your traditional British directors, names like Lee, Refn and Black (an American Bond director?) would have been very interesting choices.

By the end of Tuesday, though, this was all moot, with Deadline reporting that Sony was ready to hold the Skyfall sequel until Mendes wrapped up his current projects. With the success of Skyfall, a Bond-Mendes reunion is the option that makes the most sense for the franchise. There'll always be time for Nolan to direct one in the future. Expect to see the Skyfall sequel hit theaters within the next three years.
James Bond on Pause: Sony Ready to Hold 'Skyfall' Sequel Until Sam Mendes Is Free to Direct Reviewed by Bill Kuchman on 5/28/2013 Rating: 5

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