Sam Mendes Explains Difficulty Of Helming 'Bond' Films: "There Is No Victory. Just Survival."

It’s been a little over four years since the release of Sam Mendes’ final James Bond film, “Spectre.” And in that time, the super-spy franchise has gone through a number of filmmakers, finally landing on Cary Fukunaga, to helm the upcoming “No Time To Die.” In a new interview with The Sunday Times (via The Independent), Mendes explains why the Bond gig is so difficult and why he’d likely never return to the franchise.

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Speaking about his Bond films, the filmmaker pulled no punches describing the difficulty associated with directing such highly-anticipated projects.

“When I think of them my stomach churns,” Mendes said. “It’s just so hard. You feel like the England football manager. You think, if I win, I’ll survive. If I lose, I’ll be pilloried. There is no victory. Just survival.”

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One of the main reasons that it’s so difficult to craft a James Bond film, according to Mendes is the fact that it’s such a beloved franchise with so many fans.

“Everyone has their own version of it in their head,” he explained.

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As difficult as it appears to have been on Mendes, you can’t argue with the fact that his Bond films, which include “Skyfall” and “Spectre” are some of the more acclaimed entries in the two-dozen film collection of 007, with the former being held up as one of the best, if not the very best. So, it is a little surprising that the man who helmed those two Bond features apparently has zero interest ever returning to the franchise and talks about the difficulty associated with it.

It’s especially alarming when you consider that Mendes is on the cusp of releasing a war film, “1917,” that was shot in a way to mimic one single take. If he considers working on the James Bond films difficult and was able to helm one of the best war films in the last few years with one of the more time-consuming and carefully crafted styles, that says quite a bit.

“1917” arrives in select theaters on Christmas Day.