Rumor: Christopher Nolan In Discussions To Direct Pair Of James Bond Movies

Sean Connery as James Bond in Dr. No (1962), Metro-Goldwyn-Meyer Pictures

A new rumor claims that Oppenheimer, Dark Knight, and Inception director Christopher Nolan is in discussions to direct at least two new James Bond films.

Writer, director, and producer Christopher Nolan on the set of OPPENHEIMER.

This rumor comes courtesy of Jordan Ruimy at World of Reel who reports a source informed him that James Bond producer Barbara Broccoli “is zeroing in on Nolan.”

Not only is she zeroing in on him, but she reportedly had “discussions with the filmmaker to helm the film.” However, due to the strike and Nolan’s promotion of Oppenheimer they did not strike a deal yet.

As part of these discussions, Nolan is expected to direct and write two films.

Pierce Brosnan as James Bond fixes his tie while driving a tank in Goldeneye (1995), MGM

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Nolan is no stranger to discussion about James Bond. While promoting Oppenheimer on the the Happy Sad Confused podcast Josh Horowitz broached the subject of Bond informing the director, “$20 says you’re going to direct the next Bond film.”

Nolan responded, “I love those movies. The influence of those movies in my filmography is embarrassingly apparent. So there’s no attempt to shy away from that. I love the films. It would be an amazing privilege to do one.”

He continued, “At the same time, when you take on a character like that you’re working with particular set of constraints. And so you have to have the right attitude towards that. It has to be the right moment in your creative life where you can express what you want to express and really borrow into something within the appropriate constraints because you would never want to take on something like that and sort of do it wrong. It’s a kind of responsibility I also felt very much when taking on Batman.”

Ian Fleming on location in Jamaica with Sean Connery while filming Dr. No.

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Nolan elaborated, “You wouldn’t want to take on a film not fully committed to what you could bring to the table creatively so as a writer, casting, or, you know, everything that’s the full package.

He then said, “But, no, I sort of stand with the previous answer which is you’d have to be really needed. You’d have to be really wanted in terms of bringing the totality of what you bring to a character. Otherwise, I’m very happy to be first in line to see whatever they do.”

Ian Fleming’s James Bond: Reflections Of Death (2020), Dynamite

Interestingly, this idea of Nolan wanting to take on the film in its totality appears to be a significant hiccup in negotiations. Ruimy details, “The main issue right now seems to be the amount of creative freedom Nolan wants for the film.”

He adds, “Broccoli rarely gives carte blanche to her filmmakers, there’s usually a blueprint in how to make a Bond film, but Nolan wants to take over the entire process.”

If discussions fall apart, Broccoli does have a number of backups waiting in the wings. Ruimy reveals they are Danny Boyle, Denis Villeneuve, and Paul Greengrass.

Cubby Broccoli, Sean Connery, Ian Flemming, and Harry Saltzman look at a map of Jamaica, where filming of Dr. No will commence. (From Taschen Book, page 28).

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Nolan previously detailed that he had been in discussions with Broccoli and fellow Bond producer Michael G. Wilson back in 2017. He was asked, “Are you still tempted by the prospect of doing your own James Bond or Star Wars movie?”

He responded, “A Bond movie, definitely. I’ve spoken to the producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson over the years. I deeply love the character, and I’m always excited to see what they do with it. Maybe one day that would work out. You’d have to be needed, if you know what I mean. It has to need reinvention; it has to need you. And they’re getting along very well.”

James Bond: Casino Royale Hardcover (2017), Dynamite

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