Skyfall was an awesome surprise for me, especially considering how much I personally disliked Quantum of Solace. I wasn't the only one who felt that way either, the film had the highest box office gross of the franchise's 50-year history. Sam Mendes was exactly what the franchise needed. Unfortunately, it doesn't look like he'll be back for round two, at least not yet.
In an interview with Empire, Mendes has confirmed that he's passed on Bond 24, citing numerous other commitments:
It has been a very difficult decision not to accept Michael and Barbara’s very generous offer to direct the next Bond movie. Directing Skyfall was one of the best eperiences of my professional life, but I have theatre and other commitments, including productions of Charlie And The Chocolate Factory and King Lear, that need my complete focus over the next year and beyond.
However, Mendes still has an interest in the series, and hopes to return to it sometime in the future.
I feel very honoured to have been part of the Bond family and very much hope I have a chance to work with them again sometime in the future.
This might be dissapointing news, but on the flip side, it also means the next Bond film might have another fresh set of directorial eyes. Who would be your top picks? Chris Nolan? David Fincher? I can think of quite a few that could do some great work with a franchise like this.