The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - MOVIES PLAY -

Sound­ing just a lit­tle bit like a cen­tral char­ac­ter from the film he has just di­rected, Sam Mendes throws his head back, laughs and says “never say never”.

Al­most three years to the day in Oc­to­ber 2012 af­ter the release of his block­buster James Bond ad­ven­ture Sky­fall, Mendes was adamant it would be his first and last di­rect­ing of an in­stal­ment of the fran­chise.

“Oh no, you are one of the ones I told ‘I am definitely not do­ing the next movie’,’’ he says with a laugh.

He now says never say never as Spec­tre, the 24th movie in the fran­chise and the sec­ond one he has di­rected, is re­leased in Aus­tralia.

The 50-year-old Bri­tish-born film­maker says six months af­ter the vow he had a few ideas of where the Bond char­ac­ter could go and the sort of stunts and se­quences he could do. Then lead ac­tor Daniel Craig be­gan ring­ing him and pes­ter­ing him to get in­volved and long-time pro­duc­ers Bar­bara Broc­coli and Michael Wil­son agreed with his script ideas.

“When you get of­fered a script and you are not sure whether to do it or not, you ask your­self the ques­tion ‘what if some­one else was do­ing this, would I feel jeal­ous?’,” he says.

“And I thought ‘yes’ be­cause I felt pos­ses­sive about the new M (Ralph Fi­ennes), the new Q (Ben Whishaw) and the new Moneypenny (Naomie Har­ris), all of whom had only really be­gun their jour­ney.

“I felt I wanted to tell the next part of their jour­ney.’’

Mendes cred­its some of the pos­i­tive Spec­tre re­views to his team of film cut­ters, four Aus­tralians led by 55-year-old Sydney ed­i­tor Lee Smith.

“They (the cut­ters) were ab­so­lutely bril­liant. Lee Smith is one of the great­est Aus­tralian ex­ports, he is a fan­tas­tic cut­ter.’’

Mendes how­ever says he is bit­terly dis­ap­pointed they knew noth­ing of cricket and wouldn’t be baited into an ar­gu­ment over the Ashes.

Spec­tre is in cine­mas now

Spec­tre di­rec­tor Sam Mendes.

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