The latest director to take on the forthcoming James Bond film has been announced as Cary Fukunaga, an American filmmaker who made his name by directing HBO crime series True Detective.
Bond executive producers Michael G Wilson, Barbara Broccoli and Daniel Craig announced the news on Thursday morning, adding that filming will begin at Pinewood Studios on March 4 2019 and the film will be released on February 14, 2020.
Broccoli and Wilson said: “We are delighted to be working with Cary. His versatility and innovation make him an excellent choice for our next James Bond adventure.”
Fukunaga's appointment arrives after the departure of Danny Boyle, who was brought in earlier this year to direct the 25th Bond film. However, citing "creative differences", Boyle left the project in late August, causing speculation that the film could be significantly delayed and even spark the removal of Craig, who has starred as 007 since Casino Royale in 2006.
But the director's appointment could see the airing of a rumour familiar to the franchise. The director, who has previously worked with Idris Elba on Beasts of No Nation, the 2015 war drama which he wrote, directed, produced and acted as cinematographer for. Elba, who has been a much-discussed successor to Craig, is also considered "suave, [and] debonair" by Fukunaga. "He can drive cars really well, he’s a gear-head, and he can do the action," he told The Telegraph in 2015, "if they wanted him to play Bond, he could do it."
Fukunaga is arguably less well-known than Boyle or, indeed, Sam Mendes, the English director who took Bond to box office and Oscar-nominated success with his films Skyfall and Spectre. However, the director is admired and respected for his boundary-pushing film making. He famously included a six-minute-long tracking shot in True Detective's first season that was hailed as "the most incredible TV moment for years" by the press. Fukunaga was also considered snubbed by awards academies when he did not receive greater recognition for Beasts of No Nation.
The announcement also suggests that production is continuing at full steam, with no major delays to the anticipated release date of the next Bond film – thought to be Craig's last.