Sam Mendes in talks to direct next Bond movie

Tue Jan 5, 2010 6:29pm EST
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By Matthew Belloni and Borys Kit

LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - It's Mendes. Sam Mendes. The British director is in talks to direct the 23rd film in the venerable James Bond spy movie franchise. Production could begin as early as June with an eye toward a 2011 release date.

Daniel Craig will reprise his role as British secret agent 007 after winning fans playing Bond previously in "Casino Royale" and "Quantum of Solace."

The Bond film will be Mendes' first action-heavy project, although his 2005 movie "Jarhead" was set amid the U.S.-led war in Kuwait. Mendes, the husband of actress Kate Winslet, is better known for dramas such as "Revolutionary Road" and "American Beauty," which earned him the best director Oscar.

Bond regulars Neal Purvis and Robert Wade are writing a screenplay along with "Frost/Nixon" screenwriter Peter Morgan. Michael Wilson and Barbara Broccoli are producing.

(Editing by Bob Tourtellotte)

<p>Film director Sam Mendes poses for photographers before attending the screening of his new film 'Away We Go' at the opening night of the Edinburgh International Film Festival, Scotland June 17, 2009. REUTERS/David Moir</p>