As the clock winds down for Bond 25 to secure its scheduled fall 2019 release window after losing director Danny Boyle over “creative differences,” two new names are being added to the director shortlist, in addition to American Animals director Bert Layton, who was already in contention prior to Boyle, as Variety reports.
To replace Boyle, Variety sources say Bond 25 producers MGM and Eon are eyeing Yann Demange, director of White Boy Rick, out later this month, and S.J. Clarkson, recently set to direct Star Trek 4. If chosen, Clarkson would become the first female director in the history of the enduring British spy franchise.
Both new candidates for Daniel Craig’s final installment with the franchise have fewer credits to their names when compared to the current iteration’s past directors—Martin Campbell, Marc Forster and Sam Mendes have helmed Craig’s James Bond to date. Demange first met with Bond 25 producers before White Boy Rick, his second feature film, was even finished, and plans are just now underway for MGM and Eon to see the final cut. Clarkson’s Star Trek 4, which makes her the first woman director in that franchise’s history, will mark her theatrical film debut, after Toast debuted on BBC in 2010.
One of these candidates might get the final statement on what Craig’s iteration of Bond meant all along, as in recent years, the franchise has fluctuated more than most between different directors and iterations of the agent. Paste contributor Kyle Turner’s take on why Boyle wasn’t right for Bond in the first place, for instance, explores how Craig’s iteration has so far functioned as a deconstruction of Bond’s politics and psychological traumas in a contemporary context.
Whoever ultimately signs on, this chapter of James Bond’s history is coming to a definitive close, and the future of the franchise still hangs in the balance.