Three writers sign on for next Bond pic

Peter Morgan joins Neal Purvis, Robert Wade

Bond is back in business.

Neal Purvis and Robert Wade, who have co-written the past four James Bond features, will be joined by "Frost/Nixon" scribe Peter Morgan on the latest installment of the franchise for MGM. Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli of EON Productions Ltd. will produce.

The three writers will collaborate on the screenplay for the 23rd Bond film, which will once again star Daniel Craig as Agent 007. The triple hiring fits the pattern of the two most recent pictures, "Casino Royale" and "Quantum of Solace," which saw Purvis and Wade drafting the initial script and Oscar-winning "Crash" writer-director Paul Haggis coming on to augment it.

MGM, which shared "Royale" and "Solace" with Sony, retains full control of the newest edition in the blockbuster franchise. "Solace" grossed $570 million worldwide, "Royale" $588 million. Start of production on "Bond 23" has not yet been scheduled.

Purvis and Wade, who are represented by Endeavor and Casarotto Ramsay & Associates in the U.K., have written on "The Italian Job," "Johnny English" and "Plunkett & Macleane." They have an adaptation of John Le Carre's "The Mission Song" and the sequel "The Brazilian Job" in development.

Morgan, who is repped by UTA and Independent Talent Group in the U.K., has written or co-written "The Last King of Scotland," "The Other Boleyn Girl" and "The Queen," which earned him an Oscar nomination. His scripts for "The Special Relationship" and "Hereafter" are in development at HBO and DreamWorks, respectively.
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