Back in 2013, it was reported by Variety that writer-director Shane Black along with many other directors were on Eon/Sony’s shortlist to direct Bond 24 which would later get the title Spectre. Sam Mendes eventually had second thoughts on exiting after the massive success of Skyfall and returned to make his final installment.
Shane Black still wants a crack at directing 007 according to his AMA on Reddit from a few months ago while promoting The Nice Guys. When asked which franchise he’d like to work on his answer was Bond. A tidbit from the Q&A I’m not entirely sure thid was really picked up by many sites at the time.
Mendes has again departed from the franchise and despite wishful rumors from an anonymous tabloid writer from Radar Online claiming that Daniel Craig was going to land a bloated sweetheart deal worth $150 million to reprise the iconic part for another two films, it looks like Craig will be leaving as well.
Eon and MGM had reportedly looked at new actors to play Bond which included Idris Elba, Tom Hiddleston, Michael Fassbender, Jamie Bell, Luke Evans, Charlie Hunnam, Adian Turner, andJames Norton. Supporting that this talk of Craig’s return is less likely to happen.
Sony took a billion dollar loss in 2016 and after their headaches with the studio over Spectre’s budget, it’s unlikely that MGM and Eon will be renewing their distribution deal with them opening up other studios to grab up the rights. Competing studios such as Warner Bros. and 20th Century Fox have shown interest in becoming new distributors for future installments and would make more suitable partners moving forward as they can handle the pricey budgets attached to each film.
These two studios just happen to have a working relationship with Shane.
Black is about to shoot The Predator for Fox next month in Vancouver and is expected to direct the notoriously busy Dwayne Johnson in his Doc Savage adaptation for Sony/DC Entertainment sometime in 2018.
It doesn’t hurt that Shane has a billion dollar hit under his belt with Iron Man 3.
Having a blank slate could allow a new director to yet again reinvent and update the franchise for modern audiences. Yet, we have no clue if Black would be given a shot at all or if his schedule will allow it as MGM is aiming for a 2018-2019 release date for Bond 25. The franchise has a great tradition of hiring a new director for each film if The Night Manager’s Susanne Bier does direct Bond 25 we’re hopeful that Black could tackle Bond 26 afterward.