Christopher Nolan Says He’s “Serious” About Possibly Directing a Bond Film in the Future

     June 4, 2012


Though he’s currently focused on the release of next month’s closing chapter in his Batman trilogy, The Dark Knight Rises, fans are curious as to what director Christopher Nolan plans to do after hanging up the Batcape for good.  He was mentioned in connection with Warner Bros.’ The Twilight Zone reboot before Matt Reeves landed the job, but his named hasn’t been firmly connected to any other upcoming projects as of late.  He was long developing a film about Howard Hughes before Martin Scorsese’s The Aviator put Nolan’s project on hold, but last year we learned that the director might be reviving the film with an eye towards beginning production once he finished The Dark Knight Rises.

A new interview with the director now reveals that the Howard Hughes pic is essentially dead, but Nolan mentions his willingness to take on a franchise of a different sort in the future: James Bond.  Hit the jump for more.

christopher-nolan-james-bondIn a new interview with Empire Magazine (via The Playlist), Nolan revealed that the Howard Hughes film is off the table, adding that he “managed to find another wealthy, quirky character who’s orphaned at a young age.”  That said, the director mentioned that he’s a long-time fan of the James Bond series and reiterated that “he’s serious about the prospect” of directing an entry in the long-running franchise.

Nolan has made comments about his interest in Bond before, but he reveals in Empire that he’s already met with the franchise’s producers at some point in the past.  A Nolan-helmed Bond film might be a ways off, though, as the director added this bit about his potential involvement:

“It would have to be the right situation and the right time in their cycle of things.”

james-bond-daniel-craigThe folks over at The Playlist point out that this most likely means Nolan is interested in rebooting Bond instead of picking up where another director has left off and following suit.  It’s not hard to see the franchise’s influence on Nolan’s films, with the director admitting that the snow-set final action sequence in Inception draws specifically from On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.

I’d love to see what Nolan would do with the James Bond universe, but it certainly sounds like it could be some time before “Nolan Bond” comes to fruition.  Moreover, the current tone of the franchise isn’t entirely dissimilar to Nolan’s films, so I don’t know how much of a “reboot” Nolan could bring to the series.  It’s also worth nothing that Nolan would be incredibly expensive.  Steven Spielberg lobbied to direct a Bond film early in his career only to be shot down, then once he became a household name he candidly admitted that it’d cost too much to have him direct an entry in the series.  Nolan’s recent filmography can be found towards the top of the all-time grossers list, so you can bet that his starting price isn’t cheap.

It’ll be interesting to see what project Nolan decides to tackle after closing out his hardened Batman series, but I would definitely look forward to seeing him take on the Bond franchise at some point in the future should the prospect arise.  Sound off in the comments with your thoughts on the director’s interest.  Is Nolan a good fit for Bond?

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  • MushI

    Perfect fit.

  • j

    Bond doesn;t need Nolan’s saving touch… Like you mentioned, Martin Campbells’s Casino Royale was brilliant, with Skyfall looking incredibly promising as well. I’d LOVE to see another one of Nolan’s original screenplay’s be brought to life…

  • VicManMan

    Nolan + Fassbender = EPIC!
    That being said, I hope he does some original material like Inception and Memento until then.

    • Olive

      Inception? An original film? Change the word “dream” for the word “memory” and you have Eternal Sunshine of The Spotless Mind’s basic concept. Not to mention a thing or two from The Matrix and Altered States (1980.

      Inception is borderline plagiarism.

      • Cyberpunk14

        I agree with you, but I need to remind you that you need to add to that list Paprika 2006 directed by Satoshi Kon, I think Nolan saw that anime before making Inception.

      • Olive

        Thanks for that! Nolan copied more movies than I previously thought then.

      • Colin

        Are we really going to pretend that Japanese cinema and The Matrix were robbed? Those films are nothing but homages to other films.

      • AManWithAKilt

        You do realize that there are only 8-10 basic plots right? That’s the whole of storytelling. So other Eternal Sunshine and Inception taking place in the mind they have little in common. One is a movie about two people trying to repair a relationship that they previously had, the other is essentially a heist movie. Considering the number of movies that take place in a fabricated reality it could be considered a sub-genre of scifi. I’m not saying Inception doesn’t borrow from other movies, but that doesn’t mean it’s creatively empty and also deserves the the title “original” because it is as far as anything is original.

      • Olive

        @ Amanwithakilt:

        You’re not remembering Eternal Sunshine all that well — they’re not trying to repair a relationship. Both characters want to erase their memories so they can move on with their lives after their relationship ends.

        The movies have a LOT in common. Not only the whole concept of taking place inside someone’s mind. But also the “dreaming in layers” from Inception reminded me of when Jim Carrey is hiding in the darkest corners of his mind (because he becomes regretful and doesn’t want his memory to be erased anymore). They (Carrey and Winslet) keep going further in his mind/memory as in to escape the procedure.

        Man, are you kidding me? Even technical aspects, like the beach house falling to pieces, and the fences that are destroyed while his memory is fading away, were copied by Nolan. And there’s something else: DiCaprio’s character keeps going to that part of his dream/memory where he can never say proper goodbye to his children and they never turn around so he can see their faces. It reminded me of the scene Carrey keeps remembering the library/book shop where his former girlfriend worked, but he can never see people’s faces (whether because they never turn around or because their faces were blurred).

        Inception is not this super creative, cerebral work of art Nolan fans want people to believe it is.

        And I stand by original comment: Inception is borderline plagiarism.

        P.S.: I’m almost certain I’ve seen that token thing before.

      • Marco

        I watched Eternal Sunshine recently, and there’s not one comparison I could possibly make between the two films, nor have the two films crossed my mind at all when watching either. Inception was also slowly being crafted before Eternal Sunshine was even released.

  • Jacob

    As cool as this sounds, I’d love to see him do a more original (non-franchise) film like Memento or Inception. Or The Prestige, for that matter.

    I’m sure Nolan would make a great Bond movie but it almost seems like a waste of his tremendous talent. Plus, it seems like Bond is already in good hands with Skyfall.

  • Mavro

    I selfishly want Danny Boyle to do the next Bond film. But, yes, Nolan would absolutely kill in this franchise. It seems he would have to have a certain level of creative control so I’m not sure he would be a good fit for jumping into the middle of a franchise cycle.

  • ISeemToBeAVerb

    A Nolan Bond would be awesome! THEN a Speilberg Bond, a Tarantino Bond a Cameron Bond, a… You get the picture. A series of ‘big director’ Bonds. THAT would be something!

  • AlexHeyNa

    Whoa. Nerdgasm.

  • Adama

    I’d love to see a Nolan Bond, it would be great.. also, a Paul Greengrass Bond political thriller could be awesome.

    • Angmal

      Greengrass loathes Bond. That would never happen. I can’t see the need for a Nolan take on Bond when Campbell’s Casino Royale was basically ‘Bond Begins’ – the franchise would have to go so far off track over the next few films to necessitate a reboot that I think that’s unlikely. All that will happen is that we’ll get a new actor in the role in five or six years time; no need to throw out all this good work and start all over again. Keep building on it with new standalone stories like the franchise has always done.

      • Ltdumbear

        No need to ‘re-boot’ Bond really; for almost 3 decades now, Bond-Fans have been ‘teased’ with the fact that there are OTHER ‘Double-Oh’ agents out there; I for one, would like to see what all the other agents can do…why does it ALWAYS have to be about ‘James-friken-BOND’ ? ? ? Look at the work Jeremy Renner is doing, to take the ‘Bourne’ series off on another (just as interesting) ‘tangent’ ? So we find a whole bunch of new choices for Double-Oh-agents, all directed by new-blood (like Nolan, Greengrass, Brian De Palma, John Woo, etc, etc…) and the one ‘link’ between them all would be Dame Judy Dench as ‘M’. Is this so totally un-reasonable ?

  • Strong Enough

    While it sounds cool. I rather see him do more original work with his brother.

    I want to see what else lies inside the Nolan Bros. head.

    • Anonymous

      “I want to see what else lies inside Nolan Bros. Head”…LOL!

      Well, I don’t know about that…but I certainly know what lies inside their asses: you.

      Good god, Nolan fanatics talking like he’s the second coming of Stanley Kubrick must be on crack. Oh, let me guess: he’s BETTER than Kubrick, right?

      • vrgr

        Go away, troll. Nobody compared Nolan to Kubrick or any other director for that matter. Nolan is a great director (and writer) and Kubrick is also a great (probably greater) director. There can be more then one way to be one of the best.

      • Anonymous

        “Kubrick is also a great (probably greater) director”…PROBABLY?

        Yeah, another one inhabiting Nolan’s ass. Go powder your (brown) nose, dickwad.

      • Wow

        Man, you’ve got asshole down my friend

  • Aidan Williams

    I dont know i think nolan should just go on with the Bond series not reboot it.

  • Evan

    Nolan would be great when Daniel Craig steps down as Bond and a new Bond is cast.

    Can you imagine a new Bond film with IMAX-shot action sequences directed by Nolan?


    • gimpsuit

      Yeah, I wouldn’t be able to understand what’s going on, in IMAX

  • junierizzle

    I hope not. I’ve never been into Bond. Too bad they didn’t hold Gangster Squad for him.

  • Aissa

    Love to see Nolan direct Benedict Cumberbatch as Bond!

  • pills_26


    Yes. YES. Yes.

    This would be perfect. I’ve always considered Inception to be Nolan’s Bond film, but someone really needs to throw the real thing at this guy and let him rip. Please??

  • SP1234

    Tom Hiddleston. Nuff said.

  • AlexHeyNa

    If Chris Nolan directs a 007 film, I guarantee Tom Hardy would get the part of James Bond.

    • AMG

      I’ll take that bet.

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  • Ltdumbear

    NOPE, nope, nope…My eye’s gazeth into the crystal-ball and I see a ‘Matrix’ Prequel/Re-Boot, (directed by Nolan), with Christian Bale as (a ‘former version’ of) “Neo”, Michael Caine as ‘Morpheus’, re-cast Monica Bellucci as ‘Trinity’ (it always just BOTHERED me that she seemed to just KNOW her way around the Matrix, and never did anything much but ‘swish’ her hips and insert a key into a door-knob)Sir. Sean Connory as ‘The Architect’, and either Dame Judi Dench or (Tee-Hee) Barbara Brocolli as ‘The Oracle’ !

  • Matt

    not sure if the bond producers would be willing to give up as much control as he would like.

    also, he shoots everything in his movies and does not use a second unit which may take longer then they would like.

  • drod

    Nolan is good don’t get me wrong but………I think some people worship him. He’s a great film maker but there are plenty who are just as talented as he is. Sam Mendes for one he may not (until now) be a action director but he is still a damn good director. I think Nolan like many Hollywood celebs is a narcissist who thinks he’s the best for anything.

    • drod

      Also if he did do a Bond I think Daniel Craig would be the perfect fit for him.

  • spongefist

    Inception was shit, a big load of intellectual wank with a dribble of jizz pay off at the end.

    Keep him away from Bond.

    • Daniel

      How’s it working out for you, being totally joyless?

      • spongefist

        Well, I never actually thought that Dr Phil would respond to my comment, which by the way I thoroughly enjoyed posting…

        But thanks for asking, and I’m very happy to report that Inception is still shit.

  • MAC

    What I want NOLAN to do is to NOT stop making films or take a long break like James Cameron did after Titanic & even now. As a huge Nolan fan I don’t want to wait anymore than 2 years or so for him to make his next film & that’s a long time as well.
    & I also want him to make Grand Scale films!
    With INCEPTION he’s established himself outside Batman as well. He’s one of few director who can do whatever they want, & that’s why I want these Big directors to do Big film, cuz new-comers & small director are making small scale films! Big ones has power to do big stuff & they should do it! Not certainly always but 99% times!!

    & if NOLAN wants a ‘new’ beginning of BOND; then i don’t think it’s possible, soon!
    He can continue from 4th (& i extremely doubt he’ll be doing it)!!

    But if he want to restart with a new actor then it’s not possible soon, cuz BOND-24 is already announced & MGM are saying they want to do 7 films with Craig, Atleast!
    & as BOND films don’t flop, so cancelling it & giving it to Nolan for a restart would be almost impossible!!

    Although, I too seriously want a BOND trilogy of NOLAN  & with Michael Fassbender, if he isn’t too old by then!
    I Hope it happens, & I love Daniel Craig a lot as Bond, but after 3/4 films new actor wouldn’t be a bad idea! Especially if u have one!!

    & not just BOND, I think NOLAN should be looking at SHERLOCK HOLMES modern interpretation on the lines of BBC series!
    Maybe take Benedict Cumberbach & Martin Freeman as Sherlock & Watson! As they are growing in Hollywood as well!!
    Although WB will be pissed if he did it without them cuz they are running Robert Downey’s Sherlock Holmes films!

    & I’m saying this cuz i know that intellectual, crime & mystery thrillers are in Nolan’s wheelhouse. He will nail it. SH would become what SH is:… intellectual & mystery stuff & not just Action in slow-motion!
    Downey’s SH is just that: Action stuff had taken over story. While SH is all about brilliant Crime mystery stories. Adding Action to it is a great Cherry to the Cake. But it’s NOT cake!

  • Arnold

    It’s cool to see him direct Bourne future movies because Bourne are known for realism, maybe Matt Damon would be convinced if Nolan is directing besides Greengrass.

  • Anon

    Am I the only one who thinks a Nolan Bond would be a walk in the park for Nolan? You hear Nolan and Bond and you can instantly piece the film together in your mind, you don’t need to actually see it. Michael Caine plays Q. The romantic interest is probably marion cotillard or at least she’s in there some where (maybe the female villain). Cilian Murphy has some supporting role as a mild mannered, by the book antagonist to bond. I’m sure I’d love the film but I’d much rather see Nolan tackle something he’s never done before, perhaps Jonathan Nolan’s outer-space flick, Interstellar, that seems to be sitting on the back burner.

  • Daniel

    I take Nolan’s quote not to mean that he has to reboot it entirely, but simply that the timing has to fit comfortably into his cycle of “Original Film/Studio Property/Original Film/Studio Property.” I mean, this is a guy who has made three Batman movies, for pete’s sake — he obviously has no problem taking on another property. And Bond’s world is close enough in tone to the Dark Knight films that he wouldn’t need to start over like he did when breaking with the Tim Burton/Joel Schumacher continuity. Personally, I’m with him on this one — if the timing works out and they can strike the right deal, he could knock it out of the park. That said, Bond needs Nolan more than Nolan needs Bond. So, as great as it would be, I won’t cry myself to sleep if it doesn’t happen — as long as it means more originals like “Inception.”

  • youknownothingjonsnow

    NOLAN DO IT!!! The next question would be who will the next Bond be? Fassbender?

  • noel

    LOL! There seems to be a “Benedict Cumberbatch in Everything” Project in the comments. Haha. To be fair he’s a great actor.

    • drod

      In my opinion Craig is the best Bond and the only one of age who can play him. Fassbender is to young and Cumberbatch just isn’t Bond. Craig all the way!

  • anon

    and fassbender in everything too

  • Brandon

    Zack Snyder should direct the next Bond film.

  • Sujan Shakya

    whatever Nolan touches turns into gold. he could direct next justin bieber concert and turn it into classic

  • Nomis1700

    With reboot probably another actor for Bond. I’m pretty sure that when the time is right, it’ll be completely shot with IMAX camera’s!

  • Singularity

    The aerial hijack from the TDKR prologue was straight outta Bond.

  • Dre Dre

    Starring Christian Bale as Bond, Michael Caine as M, Marion Cotillard as the Bond Girl, Ken Watanabe as the rich guy who wants to take over the world, Tom Hardy as Watanabe’s hit-man sent to kill Bond. etc.

  • Singularity

    I know the Daniel Craig Bond is supposedly more “grounded in reality” than past concepts, but I still feel there is room to go more realistic with the character.

    Without seriously pegging himself as “the guy who takes old properties and grounds them in reality,” Nolan could conceivably take on a more realistic Bond that features a fresh take on modern espionage, and what a “super agent” would look like.

    To date, we have seen Bourne and Bond as kung-fu specialist assassins, and maybe there is room for a less action-oriented Bond. We’ll see.

    • Singularity

      Espionage is a game of chess. Intelligence officers are manipulators of people on the inside.

      C-Nol could make a picture about Bond as “puppet-master,” using his assets as extensions of himself to accomplish Her Majesty’s bidding.

      And then in the end he could settle the score with Walther PPK.

  • zillabeast

    You people kill me with wanting to dethrone Daniel Craig already. He’s absolutely killed it as James Bond so far. Two years ago you were worshiping his every step, then after Cowboys & Aliens everyone wants him gone.

    He still has another decade left in the tank as 007. I’m looking forward to it.

  • jsthedarkknight

    Listen, while it sounds great that Nolan would want to do this-Bond was just rebooted with Casino Royale as aforementioned and it would be ok I guess for Nolan to pick up where they left off. Also, I don’t see the point of rebooting Batman. This trilogy has been so successful it ranks among the most impressive films of this miserable past 10 years in cinema. There’s definitely a gap between what comic book fans want and what true cinema fans want. Cinema shouldn’t be used like these people are using it (if this is true). Besides, it would be extremely interesting to see Chris Nolan team up with Martin Scorsese at producer and sort of do a movie in the Bond/Bourne/Inception vein and could also work as a sort of war movie. Denzel Washington would be the leader of a team of agents, Matt Damon would be the naive rookie, Natalie Portman would be the doctor that tags along, Christian Bale would be a struggling and conflicted agent, Will Smith would be the street tough agent, Gerard Butler would be the Die Hard John McClane sort of agent, Sean Bean would be the agent that betrays his comrades and turns out to be a key villain, Adam Sandler would be a technical operator sort of guy used for comic relief, Brooklyn Decker would be a girlfriend of one of the agents, and Anthony Hopkins as the corrupt CIA operative actually running all the terroristic operations. The soundtrack would be composed by Hans Zimmer with U2, Bon Jovi, and OneRepublic singing some of their old songs with some new ones; Survivor, Journey, and Coldplay having some of their old songs on the soundtrack, and Eminem, Jay Z, and PitBull maybe adding in a few new songs.

  • Christopher

    Nolan…..leave Bond alone you bastard!!!!! You already jacked up Batman, you’re gonna jack up Superman….leave Bond alone!!!!

    • Jason

      If by Jack up you mean bring back from the dead. What drugs are you delusional people on?

  • Judson

    Is Nolan a good fit for Bond? Do you get paid by the comment? You guys gotta stop ending articles this way. And Spielberg was never in consideration because they weren’t lenient back then about non-British directors.

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  • B

    Ken Watanabe was already in a Bond. early 80s one with Roger Moore.

    But Nolan I am sure would put him in it.

    I can’t see him doing a Bond though.

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