Bond Series: Sam Mendes (Spectre, Skyfall) No Longer to Direct 007 Franchise

Sam Mendes, the Oscar-winning filmmaker (American Beauty) who directed the last two James Bond films, Spectre and Skyfall, is done with the 007 franchise.

“It was an incredible adventure, I loved every second of it,” Mendes said at the Hay festival, “But I think it’s time for somebody else.”

“I’m a storyteller,” he added. “And at the end of the day, I want to make stories with new characters.”

It’s unclear whether star Daniel Craig Daniel will return for MGM and Sony’s next installment.  There have been rumors that he will be replaced by another prominent actor, such as Tom Hiddleston, Idris Elba and Jamie Bell.

“It’s not a democracy,” he said. “Barbara Broccoli decides who is going to be the next Bond.”

It was Broccoli, the vet producer of the series, who picked Craig, a lesser-known actor at the time who had “zero” support, Mendes pointed out.

The director’s two Bond films, released in 2012 and 2015, grossed nearly $2 billion worldwide at the box office.