Sam Mendes has spoken in-depth for the first time about his reasons for returning to direct a second James Bond movie, saying he had unfinished business with the characters he began to carve in Skyfall. On the day that the first publicity shots of Dave Bautista as Mr Hinx and Lea Seydoux as Dr Madeleine Swann hit the web, Mendes hinted that 007 was on the hunt "from the very beginning."

Daniel CraigDaniel Craig in the first publicity shot for Sam Mendes's new Bond movie Spectre

"The reasons I'm doing the second Bond movie are the reasons I would do any movie, really, which is all to do with the story," said the Oscar-winning film-makerin a video interview. "And in this movie, Spectre, what you have is a movie entirely driven by Bond. He is on a mission from the very beginning.

"He is on the hunt, on the trail, of somebody. You don't know why, you don't know what he's doing there. That sense that something is up is also tied to a second part of a crucial story of Bond's childhood. So once that was clear that those huge things were on the table, I felt like I had to do it."

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Skyfall, starring Daniel Craig as James Bond, grossed over $1 billion worldwide and became the highest grossing UK film of all time though Mendes insists it wasn't financial reasons that persuaded him to return for a second movie. 

"...And then on top of that I felt like I'd initiated Ralph [Fiennes] as M, Naomie [Harris] as Moneypenny and Ben Whishaw as Q and I felt like I wanted to tell the next stage in their stories and develop them as characters much, much more," he said, "In this movie, in a way, they help him and they all, in different ways, risk their careers and risk their livelihoods."

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"I think what's happened post-Skyfall is Bond is the one who has more experience than they do and I think he's got a greater wisdom. And that's very much what the movie's about. It's about whether or not to pursue the life he's always pursued, whether he matters and is he going to continue or not. And you're going to have to come to see the movie to find out whether he does."

Spectre, the 24th official Bond movie, sees a cryptic message from 007's past send him on a trail to uncover a sinister organisation. Double Oscar-winner Christoph Waltz plays villain Franz Oberhauser while Monica Bellucci plays a character named Lucia Sciarra.

Spectre will hit cinemas in the UK on October 23 and in the U.S on November 6. 

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