After the shambles of Quantum of Solace (I still have no idea what that title meant), it was touch and go whether the Bond franchise, so awesomely revived by Casino Royale, actually had a future in the 21st century. Enter secret weapon Oscar-winner who, 50 years after the screen debut of this very British screen icon, has ensured that 007 has more bite, relevance and popularity that at any time in his changeable career.
Bond has never been bigger, thanks to the phenomenal box-office success of Skyfall, and people have been asking whether he will return to direct the next one, known for now as Spectre.
At first, it seemed like Mendes wouldn't be attached to the project due to the fact that 's busy script-writing schedule included penning not one, but two Bond sequels, which would require Mendes to direct two movies back-to-back, which would have taken four years out of the director's life.
It would have meant long stretches for the cast, too - led by , as the new M, as Miss Moneypenny and playing Q. However, it was decided that Bond 24 and 25 will be stand-alone pictures - and thus Mendes is now interested in helming the next installment.
The Daily Mail reports that although Mendes hasn't firmly made up his mind, he's "75 per cent of the way towards doing it". So, in theory, Mendes is more likely to return. Of course, it probably won't hurt when Bond producers and push a wheelbarrow of money in Mendes' general direction; they know as well as anybody that Mendes is one of the key reasons Skyfall was such a monster hit.
Though the Bond 24 storyline is reportedly set, and a 2014 release is being eyed, the movie won't go into production until at least the end of this year. Mendes is busy mounting a revival of 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory' on the London stage. He'll be wrapped up for a while, but 007 will probably have no problem waiting a bit longer for the man who has restored integrity to the franchise.
So, in short, Mendes is on board, but wants to see the finished script before he fully commits. And that's being kept tightly under wraps, so let's assume that if and when he confirms, we have another awesome script on our hands.
Skyfall was always going to be a bit of an homage to all the other Bond movies, and Mendes did what he always did with these iconic figures - treated him with love and affection. It was admirably staged, has a suitably sombre look, and the oddly moving final scenes have an elegiac grace and a tragic sense that the end of On Her Majesty's Secret Service only hints at. I'm definitely game for another Mendes foray into 007.
Would you like to see Mendes take on Bond 24, or do an original project?
Bond 24 is expected to hit theaters in 2014, so [[follow]] closely for updates.