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'Skyfall's' Sam Mendes won't direct next Bond movie

March 06, 2013|By John Horn
  • Director Sam Mendes, left, and actors Dame Judi Dench and Daniel Craig at a press event for "Skyfall" in 2011. Mendes says he won't direct the next James Bond film.
Director Sam Mendes, left, and actors Dame Judi Dench and Daniel Craig at… (Joel Ryan/Associated Press )

Sam Mendes wasn’t exactly quoting a James Bond title — “Never Say Never Again” — but it does appear that the filmmaker behind the highest-grossing 007 movie won’t be back in the Bond director’s chair any time soon.

In an interview with the British film magazine Empire, Mendes said that although directing “Skyfall,” which grossed more than $1.1 billion worldwide, was “one of the best experiences of my professional life," he needed to focus on several previous commitments, including the upcoming plays “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” and “King Lear.”

Mendes said he recently told Bond producers Michael Wilson and Barbara Broccoli of his decision not to direct the 24th installment in the long-running spy series.

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“It has been a very difficult decision not to accept Michael and Barbara’s very generous offer to direct the next Bond movie," Mendes said. "I feel very honored to have been part of the Bond family and very much hope I have a chance to work with them again sometime in the future."

Wilson and Broccoli told Empire: "We would have loved to have made the next film with him but completely respect his decision to focus on other projects and hope to have the opportunity to collaborate with him again."

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