A ridiculously early list of possible Bond 26 directors

Susanne Bier

British bookmakers love to set odds on who the next James Bond actor will be to generate bets. The blog decided, instead, to ponder who the director for Bond 26 — whenever that happens — will be.

So here’s a look at some possibilities. It’s far from a comprehensive list.

Susanne Bier: Bier directed The Night Manager, a television adaptation of a John le Carre novel. In mid-2016, The RadioTimes outlet reported Bier was on a shortlist of candidates to direct Bond 25, later No Time to Die.

That, of course, didn’t happen. First, Danny Boyle was hired to direct, then after “creative differences,” Cary Fukunaga came aboard.

Still, if Eon Productions boss Barbara Broccoli wants to make more James Bond history, hiring Bier as the franchise’s first woman director would accomplish that. Bier also has admirers who cite The NIght Manager as a significant work.

Denis Villeneuve: In 2017, Villeneuve’s name was reported to be a leading contender to direct Bond 25. The Daily Mail even had a report that Bond 25/No Time to Die star Daniel Craig wanted Villeneuve.

The director told a podcast the possibility came up but he was already busy working on a new version of Dune.

 “It’s a matter of timing, I guess,” he said on the podcast. Will the timing be better for Bond 26?

Christopher Nolan: This is a perennial possibility. Nolan is a Bond fan. He’s done homages to Bond movies in his own films. A Bond fan site in 2017 claimed Nolan was “more than likely” to direct Bond 25. That got shot down pretty quickly, including by Nolan himself in a BBC interview in February 2018.

The main question concerns how Nolan works. He typically gets complete control over his projects with his Syncopy company handling production. Can Syncopy and Eon egos co-exist?

Guy Ritchie: Ritchie’s name also came up as a Bond 25 director possibility in 2016, thanks to a Mirror story. There’s no sign Ritchie actually met with Eon.

Ritchie’s box office success the past decade has been mixed. However, Eon has a history of signing directors who haven’t had a hit in a while (Michael Apted and Sam Mendes). So who knows?

Cary Fukunaga: Eon has a history of every so often bringing directors in for consecutive films: Terence Young for Dr. No and From Russia With Love, Guy Hamilton for three consecutive films, Lewis Gilbert for The Spy Who Loved Me and Moonraker, John Glen for five straight films and Sam Mendes for Skyfall and SPECTRE.

Does Fukunaga rate similar treatment? He certainly took on a daunting task directing No Time to Die after Danny Boyle exited the project.

To read more about how these four came up during the development of No Time to Die, check out PART ONE of The Bond 25 timeline.

Susanne Bier on Bond 25 director ‘shortlist,’ website says

Susanne Bier

Susanne Bier

Susanne Bier, who helmed the television miniseries The Night Manager, is among a “handful” of directors “making up producer Barbara Broccoli’s shortlist” for Bond 25, the RadioTimes website said.

The story cited “sources close to Bond producers Eon,” without being more specific.

Until now, Bond 25 speculation has centered on whether incumbent 007 actor Daniel Craig would return and, if not, who might succeed him. One of those actors is Tom Hiddleston, the star of The Night Manager.

The RadioTimes story is the first report concerning who might direct Bond 25. Sam Mendes, director of Skyfall and SPECTRE, said again over the weekend that he’s not coming back to the world of 007.

RadioTimes also spends much of its story evaluating whether Bier, 56, being considered would increase Hiddleston’s chances of getting the Bond role.

Here’s an excerpt:

If Bier gets the job it would make her the first woman ever to helm a James Bond movie – and would also vastly increase the chances of the already hotly-tipped Hiddleston getting the role of Bond thanks to the pair’s previous working relationship.

Bier directed Hiddleston in acclaimed espionage drama series The Night Manager, which aired earlier this year on BBC1, and has spoken of her huge admiration for the star.

At this stage, fans may want to exercise caution. RadioTimes doesn’t say just how many directors are being considered by Eon Productions co-boss Broccoli.

Also, for the moment, Bond 25 can’t get a release date until Metro-Goldwyn-Meyer selects a studio partner to co-finance and distribute the movie. MGM’s contract with Sony Pictures expired with SPECTRE and MGM doesn’t have the resources to release a film itself.