General speculation about who is going to direct the 24th James Bond movie – the next installment after the critically-acclaimed Skyfall (which commemorated the super-spy franchise’s 50th anniversary with a “present” in the form of a billion-dollar worldwide gross) – heated up this week, thanks to the release of a shortlist of A-list auteurs and Oscar-winning filmmakers who have (at some time in the recent months) been considered and/or approached to take the job.

However, the conversation (very) quickly shifted gear, thanks to the report that Skyfall director Sam Mendes – who previously announced that he will not direct the 24th Bond flick – has entered talks to helm the project. Those negotiations, by most accounts, are either on-course to result in a deal, or already complete and just awaiting the official confirmation from Eon Productions and Sony executives.

Today, we turn out attention to a NEW rumor – courtesy of Showbiz 411 – that says that Mendes is gearing up to direct both James Bond 24 (not the official title, obviously) and then the 25th on-screen adventure featuring 007, thereafter.

The Bond franchise producers are reported to be putting the final touches on a deal that ensures Daniel Craig will portray Mr. Bond at least two more times – with Skyfall co-screenwriter John Logan lined up to handle script duties for both films – so, it would be logical for them to go ahead and make sure Mendes is, likewise, set for the long haul (to keeping the winning team intact). While it would be a massive time commitment (upwards of 4-6 years), Mendes has indicated that he enjoyed the experience of making Skyfall enough to repeat it. (… Two more times?)

Mendes is expected to work on a couple of theatrical productions – while serving as an executive producer on the Penny Dreadful TV series that he and Logan are developing – before he turns his attention to the next Bond film.; however, after that, Mendes’ schedule is wide-open (meaning, Bond 25 can fill that available slot).

It’s certainly feasible that Mendes could end up joining John Glen, Lewis Gilbert, Guy Hamilton and Terence Young on the list of directors who’ve made 3 (or more) Bond features. Nonetheless, if that does happen, there’s little reason to think that the Bond producers and Mendes will attempt to release James Bond 24 and 25 one year apart (like what Universal is doing by releasing Fast & Furious 6 this year, followed by Fast & Furious 7 in 2014).

As for whether or not Mendes should helm the next two Bond movies: Skyfall, for our money, is an imperfect but still quite enjoyable 007 installment – with a more pronounced artistic flavor than usual – so having Mendes direct the followup doesn’t sound at all like a bad idea. Problem is, this iconic super-spy franchise – like the Mission: Impossible series – tends to benefit from bringing in new blood to keep the Bond formula from becoming too stale (or descending into self-parody); that won’t happen for a while if Mendes sticks around, for better or for worse.

What do you think about the idea of Sam Mendes directing James Bond 24 AND James Bond 25? Let us know in the comments section; meanwhile, we’ll keep you updated on the situation as more information becomes available.

Source: Showbiz 411