Following Danny Boyle’s shock departure from the so-far-untitled Bond 25, MGM and Eon Productions have been scrambling to secure a replacement.
Now, according to reports, they have rounded on three possible directors for the landmark instalment of the spy series.
Variety says that two new possibilities are now on the table; Bart Layton and S.J. Clarkson, who join Yann Demange, the director of ’71 and Channel 4 series Top Boy, who was in the frame prior to Boyle being named in May.
Layton has just two features behind him, 2018 crime drama American Animals, starring Evan Peters, and 2012’s The Imposter, a documentary about the French confidence trickster Frédéric Bourdin.
He’s also directed and executive produced episodes of TV series Banged Up Abroad.
Clarkson, meanwhile, earned her stripes on shows like Casualty, EastEnders and Life on Mars, before heading to the US to direct the likes of Heroes, Dexter, Jessica Jones, The Bridge and recently the Carey Mulligan drama Collateral for the BBC.
She also recently landed the gig of directing Star Trek 4, becoming the first female director in the franchise’s history (and would become the first female Bond director too).
According to reports, Demange’s latest movie White Boy Rick, starring Matthew McConaughey, was not finished when discussions first began with Eon, and now they will be given a special screening of it to help in their decision-making.
It received critical acclaim on its premiere screening at the Telluride Film Festival last month, while Layton’s American Animals was also lauded at Sundance this year.
The circumstances around Boyle’s departure, over what were cited as ‘creative differences’, are the subject of some debate.
Some say he clashed with Daniel Craig over his casting choice for the movie’s villain, said to be Polish actor Tomasz Kot, while others have claimed that he refused to have 007 killed off at the end of the movie.
Meanwhile, Craig’s decision to jump aboard the next move from The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson has caused concerns that Bond 25 will be further delayed from its planned November 2019 release date, but sources have claimed that it won’t affect the Bond schedule.