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According to The Hollywood Reporter, Sam Mendes will not be returning to direct the next installment of the James Bond franchise. The Oscar winner played a key role in Breathing new life into the 007 film series with last year's box office smash 'Skyfall', but announced that he will not return to helm the next film.
"It has been a very difficult decision not to accept [franchise executive producers] Michael and Barbara's (Broccoli) very generous offer to direct the next Bond movie," he told Empire Magazine. "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."
The director did not completely shut the door on the idea of returning to the franchise in the future. "I feel very honored to have been part of the Bond family", he commented, "and very much hope I have a chance to work with them again sometime in the future."
Skyfall was the most financially successful entry in the Bond franchise, earning over $1.1 billion worldwide for Eon and Sony. It also received critical praise including that of THR's Todd McCarthy, who called the movie "beautifully made." The film picked up two Academy Awards; one for Adele's best original song, and another for sound editing.
Daniel Craig will return as the British agent in the upcoming 24th installment, written by John Logan.
Credit Image: Â© Snapper
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