Variety reports that a director has been signed for the next Bond movie--Marc Forster. Forster was widely rumored to be in the running, and now he is signed. Forster previously directed Bond Girl Halle Berry in her Oscar-winning turn in Monster's Ball. Personally, I hated Monster's Ball, and wrote Forster off at the time. Since then he's thankfully improved considerably. Finding Neverland was better, although he still relied on the same tricks of shooting people reflected in mirrors and through doorways, and sometimes through doorways reflected in mirrors. Stranger Than Fiction was his best movie yet, and he expanded his playbook considerably. Still, I'd hazard a guess that we'll see Daniel Craig's reflection quite a lot in the next movie. (Possibly through a doorway.) As long as he doesn't bring Halle Berry back!
What's most interesting about this move is that Forster is a Name Director, even Oscar-nominated. Producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G. Wilson have traditionally steered away from big directors, fearing that they would demand too much control in a franchise notoriously, tightly controlled by the producers. For this reason, they've reportedly turned down offers from Martin Scorsese and Quentin Tarantino in the past. Sure, Michael Apted was famous, but for a different kind of movie. When he does big studio movies, it's generally as a gun for hire. Forster has been treading in as many genres as possible, so it's not too surprising that he would want to do a Bond. But he seems more powerful than any previous Bond director. I think it's a good sign that the producers are finally willing to trust a director with a strong personal vision, even if that vision is usually... you guessed it, through a doorway. I have faith that Marc Forster will do a good job. I just hope he can do action scenes! (Apted couldn't.)
Forster himself is looking forward to the assignment, naturally. He tells Variety: "I have always been drawn to different kinds of stories, and I have also always been a Bond fan, so it is very exciting to take on this challenge," and adds that the latest direction of the Bond character opens up "a host of new possibilities" for him as director. Well, I'm glad to hear him describe himself as a fan! That's promising.
*Whoops--my mistake. Forster was nominated for a BAFTA, a Golden Globe and a DGA Award for Finding Neverland, but not an Oscar. Maybe for Bond 22, eh?