James Bond producers reveal unexpected director pick

20 September 2018, 09:28 | Updated: 20 September 2018, 15:16

The new director for the next James Bond film has been announced, with shooting due to begin in March next year.

Cary Fukunaga has replaced Danny Boyle, who left Bond 25 last month.

The announcement was made on the @007 Twitter account, which also revealed that the film will be released on Valentine's Day in 2020.

The unnamed film had been due to premiere in October 2019 but was delayed after British director Boyle left due to "creative differences".

Who is Fukunaga?

The American's first feature film was Sin Nombre won the directing award at the Sundance Film Festival in 2009.

In 2010 he made Jane Eyre with Mia Wasikowska and Michael Fassbender which was nominated for an Oscar for costume design.

He won an Emmy and Bafta award for directing the critically acclaimed first series of Sky Atlantic show True Detective which starred Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson.

Fukunaga won more praise for his war drama Beasts Of No Nation which starred Idris Elba and was released in 2015.

His new TV mini-series Maniac, with Emma Stone and Jonah Hill, is released on Netflix on 21 September.

The 41-year-old will be the first ever American director to helm a Bond film.

Bond 25 will see Daniel Craig reprise the role of author Ian Fleming's 007 for a fifth, and most likely, final time.

"We are delighted to be working with Cary. His versatility and innovation make him an excellent choice for our next James Bond adventure," said Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli in a tweet.

Boyle's wish to cast Polish actor Tomasz Kot, 41, as the film's main Russian villain may have been one of the creative differences, according to The Daily Telegraph.

Rumours were rife about Craig and Boyle clashing over other casting issues - with the actor said to have agreed all major new signings since he began his tenure as Bond.

Female director SJ Clarkson, who has been signed up for the next Star Trek sequel, had joined Bart Layton and Yann Demange on a list of contenders for the job after Boyle quit.

Last month Elba denied he was in the running to replace Craig as the MI6 agent when he leaves the franchise.

Craig previously stated that he would rather "slash my wrists" than return to the role, but later said that he made the remarks two days after he had finished shooting Spectre, and was exhausted.

Filming will begin at Pinewood Studios on 4 March next year.