Fukunaga, Cary Joji Fukunaga: Meet the New Director for Daniel Craig’s Final ‘James Bond’ Film

L: Actor Daniel Craig attends 'Spectre' premiere at The Place on November 12, 2015 in Beijing, China. (Photo by VCG/VCG via Getty Images), R: Cary Fukunaga poses with award during The 75th Annual Peabody Awards Ceremony at Cipriani Wall Street on May 21, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Gary Gershoff/Getty Images for Peabody)
L: VCG/VCG via Getty Images, R: Gary Gershoff/Getty Images for Peabody

The name is Fukunaga, Cary Joji Fukunaga. Following the departure of Danny Boyle over creative differences, James Bond 25 has a new director. True Detective Season 1 and Beasts of No Nation director Cary Joji Fukunaga will take over for Boyle behind the camera on Daniel Craig’s next James Bond film, according to the producers of the film.

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Fukunaga will be the first American-born director to helm a James Bond film. Bond producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson announced the news on Twitter, writing that the movie will “begin filming at Pinewood Studios on March 4, 2019” with Fukunaga as director. Before Boyle left the film, James Bond 25 was scheduled for a Nov. 8, 2019 release, but now No Time To Die is set for a November 2020 release after being delayed for the coronavirus.

“We are delighted to be working with Cary. His versatility and innovation make him an excellent choice for our next James Bond adventure,” wrote Wilson and Broccoli.

After Boyle left the film, reports speculated that directors like Yann Demange (White Boy Rick), Bart Layton (American Animals), S.J. Clarkson (Star Trek 4), and Denis Villeneuve (Blade Runner: 2049) could be potential replacements. Fukunaga wasn’t mentioned in those reports, but clearly he made an impression on Broccoli and Wilson, as well as Craig.

Casino Royale - 2006 Daniel Craig 2006, James Bond / No Time To Die / Eon Productions

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Fukunaga has never worked on a project on the scale of a James Bond film, but if his previous work is any indication, Fukunaga has the creative eye to handle it. Fukunaga has worked on a number of critically-acclaimed projects, including his debut film Sin Nombre, a film adaptation of Jane Eyre, the Netflix film Beasts of No Nation, and the first season of True Detective, which won Fukunaga an award for Best Director at the Emmys. Fukunaga also directed all the episodes of the Jonah Hill-Emma Stone series Maniac on Netflix, which debuted in September 2018.

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One more fun thing—and this is not anything official, but just pointing out the facts: The involvement of Fukunaga could fuel more speculation that Idris Elba might one day take over as James Bond. Fukunaga worked with Elba on Beasts of No Nation, and with Daniel Craig’s future as Bond up in the air after this film, it’s likely people will connect the dots about the connection between Fukunaga and Elba if Fukunaga hangs around for another Bond film after this one.

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